parenting

This Mama’s Heart…

                I have been thinking about and wanting to write this blog since Mother’s Day… it was a hard day for me this past year… as I reflected back on Mother’s days past, and Mother’s days to come and what being a mother really means to me.
                I’ve wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember.  Growing up, I babysat for anyone and everyone I could.  I loved kids and looked forward to the day when I would have my own.  I told anyone who asked that I wanted twelve (like stairsteps… two years apart… haha—what was I thinking?).  When Ben and I started dating, he wanted six… and I said maybe 4… maybe 6.  My only specification was that I definitely didn’t want 3 or 5.  Maybe it was the math teacher in me, but I didn’t like odd numbers ;-)… I wanted them each to have a “friend,” someone to play with all the time.   Little did we know that we would spend three years trying to grow our family before we finally got pregnant the first time.  We had over six months of fertility treatments, disappointments, and loss before finally getting pregnant with the twins.  After their emergency birth, we asked the doctor how soon would be too soon to start trying for more… he told us there was no reason to wait that he could see so we didn’t.  We prayed that more kiddos would come without treatment, but they didn’t.  15 months after the twin’s birth, we headed to a new fertility doctor and got pregnant with baby #3. 
                I loved being pregnant.  Maybe it was the amount of time, money and prayer that it took to get that way, but I loved it!  There were uncomfortable moments (I did have twins), but I loved every minute of knowing that I was growing a sweet baby (babies) inside of me.  I looked forward to a natural delivery with Kinsey and the opportunity to carry more babies to term and deliver them naturally as well.  I didn’t get what I wanted… and for months I have struggled with the feelings that resulted from her traumatic delivery and the separation that we had following it.  She wasn’t supposed to be the last baby that I had the opportunity to carry and even at 41+ weeks pregnant, I never thought that I wouldn’t be pregnant again.  It’s something that has been hard for me to come to terms with, even 11 months later. 
                 I don’t for one minute take for granted the fact that I AM a mother!  I am the mom of three precious angels and I love that I get to spend my days with them.  God gave me these sweet babies to birth and raise from the start and I love that.  However, on Mother’s Day last year and many days since, I have felt sorry for myself.  I felt sorry for myself because of all the babies that I still wanted to carry and all the children that I thought I was going to get to have.  It’s been a long year of struggling with myself and going back and forth over the “what ifs” and trying to figure out what, if anything, I could have done different.
                After Kinsey was born, I was just so happy to be alive and to know that she was healthy and well, that the reality of things didn’t set in at first.  As I started to come to grips with my feelings and the reality of the future, many people told me that it was okay to be mad at God for taking away my dream.  Many of Ben and my family members told me that THEY were mad at God for taking away our dream.  Despite all my angry and sad moments in the last 11 months, I have not been angry at God at all.  I’ve been mad at myself, I’ve been mad at the doctors, and I have even been mad at my past dreams, but I do not blame God.  Here’s why:
1.        God gave me this dream of being a mother.  It didn’t happen in my timing, and it didn’t happen the way we wanted it to.  It took a lot of struggling, but because Ben and I had this dream, we refused to give up.  We wouldn’t have these three beautiful children if it wasn’t for how important this dream was to us!   This dream that HE gave to us!
2.       God didn’t take away my ability to have future biological children.  Circumstances did.  It may not be the way that we wanted it to happen, but one thing Ben and I have learned throughout the past few years is that God has a plan that is way bigger than what we can even imagine or believe.  
3.       And thirdly because I WILL have more children.  My family is not finished and God still has BIG plans for us.
                 Ben and I sat down in September and had a serious talk about the future.  We talked about future jobs, future homes, and our future family.  We have always planned on adopting, but in our minds this was a far off goal.  We thought it would happen after our kids were older so we could adopt from the foster care system.  However, as we talked about how we saw our family growing and when, we both agreed that God was leading us to pursing and being open to adoption sooner rather than later.  We both realized that maybe the change in our circumstances was God’s way of saying we needed to pursue this path now, not years from now. 
                We started praying in September, specifically for the children that God might be preparing to be a part of our family, whether that day is soon or much later on.  In addition, we have been researching and calling around and meeting with adoption agencies and foster care workers like crazy and have hit quite a few roadblocks at the start of the this journey.  We are continuing to pray that God will lead us down the path that he has for us to follow in order for us to grow our family.   As we make decisions about where we are going to move to next, adoption and our three sweet kiddos play a huge part in our planning.  We ask that you, our friends, pray for us as we make those decisions and pray too for our future family as God leads us to them!  We desire nothing less than to be a tool for him as we share the love we have with others.

James 1:27 “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

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