A Lesson In Parenting
Today has been one of those days when I've struggled. Struggled as a mom. Struggled as a friend. Struggled as a wife. Struggled with the obstacles put in front of me. I know the answer. I know what to do. Stop. Pray. Breathe. Pray again. I've tried, and still failed miserably. I'm just being honest.
I find myself making excuses, trying to explain my son's behavior and all the challenges he faces. I hear the words of a friend ringing in my ears, "It would almost be easier if he had something blatantly wrong with him." That's the thing. There isn't anything wrong with him. He's exactly the way God created him. And he's mine. My boy. Even when he's challenging and frustrating and trying my patience. I want people to understand him. I want them to know there are some things he just can't help. I want to explain his meltdowns and acting out. I see the stares. I know what you're thinking. I've thought it before too. If only... "If only that boy would behave. My child will never act like that. I would never let my kid get away with that." You might. You just might. If you knew. If you understood. Because the truth is I'm fighting to understand him too. His beautiful complicated busy mind, he's always on the go, always moving, always creating. The truth is nothing is easy. A simple trip to the store. An outing to meet friends. A meal out. The simplest thing can often turn into the most stressful and complicated event. So I pick my battles and wage war with myself over how to make sure that he knows he's loved.
These are the days that make me want to give up and fight harder all at the same time. If I knew what makes him tick and if I had the magic pill, believe me, I would spare no expense, leave no stone unturned. I would dowhatever it took to help him, develop him, make him understand that he's understood.
Parenting him is hard and beautiful and it brings tears on a regular basis. Tears of joy when he experiences a success. Tears of frustration when we struggle to understand each other. Tears of pain begging God to intervene. Mostly to help me find the strength and patience to help him become the person God created him to be. It's magnificent. I just know it. This little boy, this child whom I love and prayed for, brings me to the end of myself when I think I have nothing left to give and I surely want to crawl under a rock for how I've handled myself as a parent, then right there at that point of exhaustion and chaos I collapse. Thank God I fall into heavenly arms big enough to clean up even my mess. And I can't help but think this is what I do to my Father.
Oh how He must want to pull His hair out when He's trying to understand why I do the things I do. He must be exacerbated watching me spin out of control. He knows my every thought and I'm sure that's enough to make Him want to cringe and cry and curl up in a ball wondering if He somehow made a mistake when He made me. And that's the point. I realize He didn't make a mistake at all. He made no mistake in making me nor did He make a mistake in creating my amazing child. We are both made in His image. This boy whom I prayed for. I wore the carpet and my knees out begging God to make me a mom and this child, my boy, was His answer for me. He didn't just hand him over unknowingly - God knew the mess I was, am and would be. God knew I would fail. He knew it would be hard. He knew what challenges we would face and what we would need. The even more incredible part is the reminder that I was given this beautiful complicated gift to borrow. At the end of the day, at the end of myself, at the beginning of His plan, He gave me the chance to be his mom. Before he was mine, before he was his birth mom's, he was God's. No one can love him more than the Father who created him. Somehow He sees fit to love me, too. The beautiful chaotic mess I am.
Today was hard and good and challenging and wonderful, full of reminders of God's grace and love, the ultimate example of parenting in its purest and most perfect form. Thank You for loving me, Father, even me.