Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Who I Can Be

I am far too often not the mommy I want to be. The problem is, a mommy is ALL I ever wanted to be. When I was little, I distinctly remember wanting to grow up and stay at home with my kids like my mom did with us. So, now that I have that privilege, why am I often disappointed with how I'm doing?

My temper is too short. My patience is too thin. My energy is too low. This is not how it was supposed to be. Not in my plans, anyway.

And therein lies the problem. I cannot continue to strive toward being the mommy that I picture. I need to ask God who is the mommy He wants me to be to Abigail and Sadie.

When I look at myself, I see that Abigail watched too much tv this morning. I see that I glanced up from the computer each time she said, "Mommy, WATCH THIS" and proceeded to try to impress me with daredevil stunts. I see that I gave her a Pop Tart for breakfast because I was too tired to try harder. I see that I haven't taken her outside to play yet, even when the sun was shining so beautifully.

But I like to think when God looks at me, He sees the love in my heart toward my daughters. He sees the snuggles and cuddles at bedtime. He sees when we chase each other to her room. He sees the bathtime when I sit cautiously by while allowing Abigail to wash Sadie's hair. He sees our dinner the other night when she and I talked about the different parts of our bodies that God had made and what we can do with each part.

He sees that I'm trying, even when I see the moments when I fall harder than I mean to. And He gives me a beautiful guideline.

4 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
(I Corinthians 13: 4-7, NLT)

Unfortunately, I see all too much of the times I am not patient or kind. That I can be too proud to admit when I overreacted. That I demand my own way all the time, and it makes us butt heads. I am irritable...far too irritable.

But I have the model of perfect love. I know what I am capable of, with God's leading. I'm so thankful that He sees me where I am, and shows me a better way. Because when it comes down to it, I am head-over-heels crazy about my girls. And I am doing what I always wanted to do. But I can't do it on my own.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Song Explains It

Okay, so I am going to cheat a little bit and write my thoughts on Mother's Day a month early. Because it is on my mind, so there. And if you go to church with me, you may very well hear these thoughts again.

I am scheduled to sing the special music on Mother's Day at church. If I remember correctly, I sang on that day last year, too. I always have kind of a hard time finding a good song for a Mother's Day special. So many of them seem like the saccharine-y mommy versions of "Butterfly Kisses." They are just a little too sappy for my taste. Yet, I still feel like I need to choose a song that somehow goes along with the day.

Yesterday, I was driving with the girls in the car, and heard a song on the radio that I had never heard. I actually only caught the last chorus before the song ended and went on to the next song, so I didn't even know the name of the song or who it was by. But I knew I had to find it to sing at church.

The reason I liked the song so much for a Mother's Day song is that it focused on the goodness of God in one's life. It was a simple testimonial of a person who could honestly say that through the good and the bad along life's way, God's been good.

When I had my first Mother's Day after having Abigail, I felt like I had reached a rite of passage. I wanted to celebrate like I had never celebrated anything in my life. I wanted that day to be as special as it possibly could be, because HEY EVERYBODY, I'M A MOM! It never occurred to me that the holiday may not be as welcome to some. Mother's Day the last two years looked different to me. After experiencing the loss of two pregnancies (and before finding out I was pregnant with Sadie), I felt more subdued to the day. I understood the joy of celebrating being a mommy to Abigail, but I felt the pain of the children who did not join our family. And I realized that there are many women who feel the same.

Maybe they could not have biological children. Maybe they have lost pregnancies. Maybe they have even felt the pain of losing their own mom, and miss celebrating that day with her.

Yet God is good. He comforts. He loves. He carries. He shows grace. He is patient through grief. He mourns with those who mourn, and rejoices with those who rejoice. And that is why I chose this song. For those who love, love, love Mother's Day. For those who dread it. For those who can't wait to celebrate it. For those who would rather skip the day altogether. God understands it all. The joy, the pain. He is so good.