From the time many girls are little they are dreaming of motherhood. But there’s a BIG secret nobody told us before we became moms.
When my first child, Kyle, was born, I looked down into his chubby little face and vowed I would be the best mother this earth had ever known.
Four weeks later I was ready to tuck my sweet baby back into my womb.
Where did the “Best Mom In The World” intentions go? They disappeared into the void after a month of walking day and night with a colicky baby in my arms.
We added four more children into our quiver after Kyle.
Somehow, when I had my first baby, I didn’t know the secret other moms knew that had already had kids.
The BIG secret
When we are assigned a little one to take care of, we don’t know God has enlisted us into, “The Amazing-Mom Boot Camp.”
Mom’s are gullible and agree to enroll in this secret programme they believe will be monumental, fun and exciting.
But don’t worry, if you haven’t had children yet; this Masters programme is far from boring and is quite an adventure.
If you accept this motherhood assignment; read the fine print
It starts with assignment #1: poopy diapers, sleepless nights and a creature hanging from your breast. After you have mastered these three tasks; you graduate to teething, diaper rash, and your baby only wanting mommy.
Then you take an assignment to chase toddlers; lock everything up in your house, and get ready for terrible hairdo’s – not on the child – on you.
Buy yourself a very expensive pair of running shoes, because you won’t sit down for a year or two and you will put thousands of miles on those shoes; between your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom. Most likely you won’t use these pricey shoes to go to the mall, it’s just not worth the extra exercise.
If you survive, you will be allowed to take on assignment #3: temper tantrums – which always happens in the grocery store in front of large staring and eye-rolling crowds.
You will also welcome “No” at the same time… there will be lots of “Noooooooo” with toys and objects being flung further than the Incredible Hulk can throw school buses. Buy dark sunglasses, so nobody recognizes you out in public with little Hulk.
The next few years will be a “Happy Motherhood Assignment”
You will get a child who loves you and is fun to be around. Enjoy these moments because they will disappear as quickly as they came. You will spend quite a bit of time running your kids to sports, music lesson, and friend’s houses. Enjoy their constant chatter, because you’re heading into the “Silent Assignment” next.
Prepare yourself for the teenage years
The teenage years will hit you up the side of the head like a ball you couldn’t catch in a Blue Jay’s baseball game. You will be super excited to have teenagers coming your way, that you can do all sorts of fun things with, and then the ball will smack you between your eyes.
During this stage, you will be tired. Oh so tired! You will worry as you’ve never worried before. Buy good knee pads and develop thick skin. You will need both. Mama, you will be on your knees praying daily, and you will have kids who don’t like you or value anything you say. They will leave their socks and dirty dishes everywhere (after they leave home you will still find these for a year or two in strange places; check under their bed and the couch.)
Earplugs will also come in handy for the slamming doors, loud music, stomping feet, and friend’s who stay up late chatting with them; because teenagers give the very best advice to each other.
You’re wondering why I called this the “silent stage?” Because your child will most likely not say a word to you for five years. Try not to take it personally. Watch Dr. Phil and stock the pantry with brownies, you will need both of these daily.
Having your parenting skills graded
During this assignment, God and the angels will have a little chat and grade you on how you’re doing in “The Amazing-Mom Boot Camp.” You are going to believe that you got an “F” on this assignment. Because every morning when you open your teenager’s bedroom door, you will determine your mom- grade by their room.
I promise you this is a failing grade EVERY time.
Take my husband Vance’s advice, “Stop going in their room and nagging them; it’s not worth the battle.”
Graduate of Motherhood
After the heavens have decided that you have SURVIVED parenthood, (yep this was the goal all along – SURVIVAL – please don’t tell people who aren’t parents yet, or you will ruin the fun), you will become a graduate. HALLELUJAH!!!
What does this mean?
Mama, you will look nothing like the person you were when you started boot camp: you will have stretch marks, sagging breasts, wrinkled eyes, grey hair, flapping arms and age spots. Your lips will also be wrinkled from sipping large cups of caffeine each day for twenty-five years.
You will look in the mirror, and you will wonder where the young, pretty girl you once were, has gone?
In her place is a mother whom her children love and cherish, and see as a beautiful woman in every way. This new mom is a hero amongst her children for the love and sacrifice she gave her family for many years.
Beautiful mother transformation
Nobody seems to notice her flaws, just her beautiful laughing eyes, her lovely smile, her soft arms that comforted her children as they leaned into her for a hug, and her age spots from days of playing at the park with little people.
Her family will be proud of her and will one day want their children to have a mama just like her.
Say a prayer
So dear mama, as you sit in your food stained clothes and terrible hairdo today; and your selfish little people are screaming and yelling around you, close your eyes for just a moment and say a prayer.
Ask God to help you overlook all their bad behavior, screaming, yelling, and sleepless nights, and remind you that one day you will be a hero to these little people.
You will graduate from, “The Amazing-Mom Boot Camp”
Motherhood is hard, but I promise you the rewards are far greater than all the work you have put into these creatures that wear you out each day.
You are doing a wonderful job of raising children, and I know it doesn’t seem like it now, but if you give these little people over to God, and pray every day for them – and YOU – God can help you SURVIVE.
Mom, you’re a hero
I was one of those little hooligans, and I didn’t appreciate my mother until I had children of my own. I realized the sacrifice and love she had poured into me and my siblings. My mother is a hero in my eyes, and I hope to have even half the compassion, grace and love she has displayed in her lifetime
Thank you, to all the mothers for what you have done. You’ve been a beautiful blessing in the life of a child, and they will always need YOU!
But keep this motherhood-information to yourself. We wouldn’t want other unsuspecting women to be afraid to enter motherhood after hearing this life-changing secret.
Happy Mother’s Day!
You are appreciated, you are beautiful, and you are loved!
*read about the day my mother asked me to forgive her and how it changed our relationship: When A Mother Asks for Forgiveness