Tomorrow around the time school gets out I will have been a mother for…well, I’m not really allowed to say exactly how long any more, but it doesn’t seem all that long to me. I’ve been thinking a lot about motherhood lately. With our youngest just weeks from his college graduation and our tenth grandchild on the way, this seems like an appropriate time to stop and consider.
As I think back to that day in Warner Robbins, Georgia when I held my baby girl in my arms for the first time, I am absolutely astounded by what I didn’t know. I wasn’t prepared to be anybody’s mother. It’s tempting at times like this to let regrets creep in, to wish that it was possible to go back and get a do-over, but if I’m really honest and if I take the time to lean into God’s grace, I know I wouldn’t change a thing. Along this road of motherhood I’ve learned that God is always good, His timing is always right, and His strength truly is made perfect in our weakness. While it would have been nice to know these things when I was starting out, I’m not sure it would have been possible. Some lessons only come through living.
I don’t envy the moms of today. I think they have a harder road than my generation did and I don’t think I could take the pressure. I can remember thinking how sad I would be when my family-growing days were over. I thought having babies, taking care of toddlers, and making a home for children was about the most exciting adventure ever. I didn’t want it to end. That’s why I’m kind of surprised by the feeling I find welling up within. It’s not really familiar, but it’s welcome, it’s holy, and I know it comes–like all other good things–from the abundance of God’s grace. As I approach this next season of life, as I say good-bye to mothering dependent children, I find to my amazement that my dominant emotion is contentment. I’ve done what I could by God’s grace. That same grace has covered all of the many, many times I’ve blown it. In the midst of even more grace I’m looking to the future with hope, enthusiasm, and expectation. God is good. His ways are perfect. He can be trusted. If parenthood taught me all of that, what great things can I learn by growing old? We’ll see. Bring it on!
Happy Birthday, Amy. Thanks for your patience and thanks for being you. I love you!