A Few Words For the Mothers of Graduates – Big or Small

 

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There was a day I didn’t know if I’d have kids. Not that I didn’t want them, but life was what it was and I didn’t see how or when they would ever be a real possibility. And then God made me a mother and life definitely wasn’t what it was anymore.

My first child was more than a gift, he was a life-saver. When I got pregnant with him, I was in a relationship, but not a marriage. I was in a place of rock-bottom and then sitting on my favorite sitting rock on our farm’s creek six months pregnant, I realized it was time to look up and surrender. So, I did. Jesus saved me that day and a few months later I became a mom.

Learning to be a mom wasn’t – and still isn’t – easy. But it’s the most rewarding, hardest job I’ve ever had. More than six years of college. More than ten years in the corporate world. More than wrangling the blasted 36-year old hay rake I had to deal with yesterday. Motherhood is hard. Motherhood is beautiful.

A couple of years into being a mom and juggling the corporate grind, I had an opportunity to interview for a “bigger, better” corporate job. They flew me to St. Louis as one of three position finalists and I honestly thought I was about to be doing something great for our little family. It would mean more time away, but the opportunity for more “things” – and that was enticing. I sat in the airport on the way home and prayed that if it wasn’t what God wanted for me, I wouldn’t get it. But inside, I really wanted it. Fortunately, God knew better.

If I had taken that job, another child wouldn’t have been a possibility. I thought I was ok with that. After not getting the job, I realized another child was exactly what we needed to make our family complete – and that’s what our little girl did. She made our family complete.

Today is her last day of kindergarten at a school she’s been in for three years with several children and teachers she’s spent the majority of her days with. She’s sad about leaving. I’m sad about her leaving. But in the end, this is just another step towards all the other steps God already has laid out.

Sometimes it’s hard to see the hay for the grass, it all just runs together and looks the same. Life gets busy and lines get blurred. But to get the most out of this one life we get, we have to stop. Stop and remember what’s important, I mean what’s really important. And then we have to let that dictate where and how we move forward. Each life chapter holds it’s own sweet memories, it’s own sweet beauty.

I personally think it’s ok to stop and relish the past. Cry a few tears if that’s what comes. Write a few words if that’s what helps. That’s where I’m at today. Crying and writing. Tomorrow will start a new chapter that will hold it’s own special moments and one day I’ll be looking back on this one and crying a few tears, maybe writing a few words as we move to the next again.

And that’s the glory of it all – life is about moving on. It’s about changing and growing into who we were created to be. It’s a journey, with mountains and valleys, sometimes droughts and floods. But it’s a journey worth the hard. Days like today remind me that moving forward is a necessary part of life, and even if the next step hurts a little, the view from the top of the hill will be worth the climb.