For the last 18 years I have been called, “Mom.” I remember vividly the day I received that title. After nine long months of waiting, my first son emerged from my body and I was filled with emotion. Love, joy, fear, and a sense of awe swept over me as I held my little bundle. These feelings magnified as my husband and I welcomed three more sons over the next several years. The responsibility of raising four children is enormous and I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit that there were times that I felt completely overwhelmed.
I remember the early years…wishing the days away and praying that I’d make it to the weekend. I became resentful that my husband, who went to work each morning, got to wear nice clothes and go to the bathroom uninterrupted. Those days went by slowly, but now here it is 18 years later and our first little bundle is about to graduate from high school. In August he will leave our daily life as he goes off to college.
Now as I watch my colleagues with babies and young children and hear their stories of sleepless nights and potty training woes, I can smile. My advice is always the same, “Embrace every moment, it goes by quickly.” Some will look at me with weary eyes and ask, “How did you survive four kids?”
My answer: PRAY! Pray often, pray hard! It’s okay to admit that you need help. Turn to your family and friends, but remember that the best guidance we can receive is that from our God.
This time of reflection is a bit sad, but mostly a time of pride for me. My son has grown to be a wonderful, caring young man who has a love for the Lord. He is a leader for his three brothers and although he will be missed at our nightly meal together, we are all excited for him. I can’t wait to see what God has planned for the rest of his life!
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)