Oh, “thefacebook.com”. (haha, Tyler…)
How fickle I am with you. I love you and your skill at keeping me up to date on what people are cooking in their crockpots and what they are washing their floors with, but I hate you for the competitive spirit you grow within me that I try so desperately to snuff out.
I love you for showing me pictures of my long lost friends, but I hate you for making me feel like I have to keep up with the Joneses.
I could go on.
But, in all seriousness, I like when I find serious and thoughtful questions posted by my friends. Larry, who I respect greatly, posted this question and I _seriously_ thought about it for hours and hours because I wanted to answer it just right. Answer it just exactly how my heart really felt, but yet was so hard to put into words.
“What do you wish someone told you about being a parent?”
I knew I would love my child. I knew being a parent would be ‘great’. I knew that it would be sad when they left home forever.
But I didn’t know how deep my love for my child would actually be. How my whole heart would ache for them to be strong, healthy, and happy. How I would willingly sacrifice my whole self in any way possible to help them. That I would conquer all my fears so that they would feel safe and secure.
I didn’t know that I would check to see if my sleeping newborn was still breathing multiple times a night. Then still keep checking when he turned 1…and 7. I didn’t know that I could jump out of bed to the smallest cry to soothe him, while only going on 1 hour of sleep myself.
I didn’t know just how unchanging my love would be for him. I would be spit on, hit by, yelled at, told NO by, talked disrespectfully to, and told I wasn’t their friend. I would be cuddled with, slimily kissed, and told they loved me to the moon and back. And the same hands that pushed me away, would reach up for me saying, “Mama, hold me?” and my love would grow even deeper.
I didn’t know that I would take on all their passions as my own, fighting in their corner, ready to “mother bear” anyone that tried to mess with them. How I would launch into attack mode when anyone or anything tried to snuff out their Joy.
I didn’t know that my favorite Willow House hurricane would get shattered and my nicest Express shirt would get cut during their “art” project cutting phase, and that I would just think: “Eh, I’ll just go to Goodwill and find something new.”
I didn’t’ know that I would never _feel_ like I great Mom, that I would constantly be praying for God to grow me and keep enabling me to choose humility and extend grace. That I would reach for every parenting book (albeit, not usually finishing them all) and research each new parenting craze.
But most heart wrenching yet heart thrilling to me: I didn’t know how desperately I would want them to know and love the Lord and bring Him glory in all that they do. How I would regularly cry out to God to draw them to Himself and to meet them right where they are. How I would pray that the Lord would enable me to hold them with open hands to Him and trust that He is sovereign, all the while knowing most of their growth will come from pain.
See, here’s the thing. My love fails. Yet, it is one of the deepest loves I know, the love I have for my sons. God’s love is unfailing. For this beautiful relationship between a parent and child to even give us a glimpse of God’s perfect love for us makes me love Him, revere Him, and be overwhelmingly humbled by His faithfulness to me all the more.
Thank you, Larry. ;)