It will get easier or will it?
“Just wait until the children are a bit older and things will get easier.”
That is what I was told in those early hard days of motherhood. The days when the fog of sleepless nights was ever present and the pile of laundry grew till I was sure it was reproducing itself. The little hands and busy feet were so busy and I felt completely outnumbered, and I was. Just to get out the door took an act of Congress. I remember the feeling of relief when my oldest could buckle his brother into his car seat. When Joseph finally could tie his own and his sibling’s shoes I wanted to celebrate! (Why didn’t I make velcro the requirement for shoes back then?”) The five under seven shuffle that my husband did in the dark of night so as to avoid the legos strewn on the floor became a regular dance in our house. And I found myself dreaming of the day when they were older. “It’s a season,” everyone said. While I knew that was true it was a tough season. And surely once we got through it life would become easy, right?
Here I am now nearly 46 years old. That season has come and gone and new seasons are here. The season of courtships and graduations, of life plans and letting them go. And yes, it’s different. And easier, in some ways. I now get to sleep through the night. I can hold adult conversations again without interruption. Steven and I can go away for the weekend and leave our children at home running things. I can go through a buffet line without having a panic attack over all the plates that had to be made at once. And I can go out for coffee with a friend with a small purse instead of a huge diaper bag. So, yes it’s easier.
But, it’s not really.
Why do I say that?
Because the sleepless nights of babies crying have been replaced with worry and care in the wee hours of the morning if your son has not returned home yet. The interruptions of sleep in the night for nursing a newborn have been replaced with late night talks sitting on the bed hashing through heart issues with a teenage girl. Rather than feeling panicked over how to make 4 plates at once at the buffet bar, there is the pain in your heart that you feel when your young adult child is going through a difficult time. You wish you could take it away for them but you can’t. And you know the work you must do for your loved ones is now on your knees before the Lord.
Oh, don’t get me wrong. I am LOVING this season of life! There is something so amazing about conversing with your adult children as your friends and sharing experiences with them together. There is something so beautiful in watching these pieces of yourself becoming their own individual before the Lord. It’s a wonderful season and I am enjoying it thoroughly.
But, here is the crux of the matter.
There is not a season of rest here on this earth. EVERY season is hard. We will not truly have our rest until heaven and the sooner we come to embrace the hard seasons the happier we will be. Because life is about service, life is about laboring for Christ’s Kingdom and embracing the hardships will be the path of peace.
So yes, the teenage and young adult years will pass and then our home will be full of grandchildren, Lord willing. And then I will be assisting my children through their own sleepless nights and the fog of early childhood. My work will still be there, the difficulties and cares, busyness and worries will still be there, just in a different way. And as our parents age, our care will be towards them more and more. Life will still be hard.
I share all this not to discourage you, young mothers. But, to fill you with hope. EMBRACE the struggle today. EMBRACE these difficult days as your friend. Don’t just seek to get through them, EMBRACE them! They are growing you, shaping you and making you into the woman of God you should be.
And yes, believe it or not, you will miss these days. Yes, you are a mom in the trenches right now, but you will miss these trenches. These sweet days of sticky fingers, snotty noses, and kissing boo-boos. I didn’t believe it when others told me, but yes, they do go by so fast!
Hug your babies, serve your little ones big and small. He makes all things beautiful in His time!