*Disclaimer: This is my own personal story into my motherhood journey. This is what I have experienced, where I have come from, and where I am at.
I will never forget the moment I realized I in fact wanted kids. It was no secret I didn’t quite know where I landed in my adult years as to whether or not I wanted to start a family. After David and I were married, the topic of having kids always seemed to wind its way into family conversations. I had been open from the beginning I wasn’t sure what I pictured our family looking like, and he graciously gave me space to truly think about it without adding any pressure.
David and I lived on the Central Coast shortly after we were married. I loved being so close to the ocean and enjoyed walking through the neighborhood most evenings, the salty Seabreeze tousling through my wavy hair, the sound of the seagulls in the distance. To this day, it is at the top of my list as far as places I have lived and loved. Ok, full truth, I haven’t lived very many places. But there is something so enticing about living blocks away from the ocean.
On one particular evening walk, we had been discussing our finances. With hardly a year under our belts as husband and wife, we acknowledged the need to get a grip on the student debt we had both accumulated while implementing major lifestyle changes in hopes giving our financial situation a complete makeover. As we talked about the importance of tightening the straps, I blurted out something that had been quietly infiltrating the desire of my heart. What if God were to call us to adopt someday? I hardly believed the words I was saying.
It was a small seed had been planted by various life situations over the years began to influence my own thoughts about what I could see our family possibly looking like down the road.
Fast forward a few years. We made our way to London as missionaries and the thought of kids was not on the forefront of my mind. Helping with the church plant was my current commitment where my focus and attention were directed.
Less than a year after our move overseas, our dear friends who were on the church planting team, announced they were expecting their first baby. I was ecstatic for them. I remember it like it were yesterday. My friend’s daughter couldn’t take her eyes off of my reaction, all of us crammed around the communal table where we would all frequently share meals. Side note, if you are ever looking for a big reaction, I’m your person. I can’t hold back. Nor can I hide it. My feelings of excitement, or the lack thereof, are always plastered over my entire face.
I went upstairs and immediately bawled my eyes out. I was completely unprepared for the emotions I was experiencing. Complete joy and yet a deep longing for something I had not yet experienced.
I sat with the pastor’s wife, my close friend and confidant and cried about all that I was feeling later that evening. It helped to talk through the foreign emotions I was experiencing. What I began to realize was I in fact did want to experience what it was like to be a mother. To have a tiny human to love on and nurture.
It wasn’t the right timing, at least not at that point. But I began to pray daily, that the Lord would continue to shape the desires of my heart.
My friend gave birth to the sweetest and most perfect little girl around Christmas and upon hearing their tiny little bundle of joy had entered the world safe and sound, I cried again. Tears of joy for my sweet friends amongst tears of longing for something I was greatly desiring.
Our anniversary was a few short months following. David and I packed our bags and headed for some much needed time away to Venice. I had a sneaking suspicion I was pregnant, I could hardly keep my eyes open the days leading up to our trip. I was giddy with excitement the next morning finding out the fatigue was in fact for a reason and I wasn’t making it up in my head. I could hardly contain it, I was going to be a mom.
Once, twice, and a third time, plus a bonus child we welcomed into our home for brief period time. Motherhood looks completely different than I had ever imagined it to be that morning in Venice I found out I was pregnant with our first. I didn’t expect birthing three baby girls. I didn’t expect to gain the title of “Special Needs Mom” or “Heart Mom”. I didn’t think my title as “Foster Mom” would be so short lived, or that my heart would continually break for that sweet child and so many others.
Motherhood is hard work. It is the hardest job I have ever had. It is unpredictable at best and comes with so many ups and downs, especially since adding an extra chromosome to the mix, never mind the current pandemic situation we are living through or the two intense fire seasons we have experienced over the past couple of years.
But, in spite of all the crazy, I am forever thankful these three little girls call me mom. They love me even on my worst of days. They give me grace when I fail. The welcome me with open arms and remind me that God still loves me. The keep me on my toes while giving me a sense of calm. It is the wildest of seasons, raising kids that is. One that I wouldn’t change for anything.