Monday, March 10, 2014


Ok, folks, get ready for an honest-to-goodness, bare-your-soul, kind of post.  I have been pondering these things in my heart for weeks, and have not had the words (or the courage) to let it all out.

Motherhood is both everything and nothing like I thought it would be.

Yes, there are so many precious moments.  When Henry snuggles his little head into my neck.  When he mumbles "ma-ma-ma-ma," even though I know it doesn't mean a thing.  A smile saved just for me.  The way only I seem to be able to find his most ticklish spot.  His chubby cheeks when he falls asleep in his car seat.  His sweet face when he finally gives up and gives in to falling asleep.

But there are not so great moments, also.  Moments where I want to scream, yell and pull my hair out.  I've come close.  I've looked my child straight in the eye with my deepest, baddest Mommy voice and said, "No!" which usually brings about a look of hurt and confusion, sometimes followed by a whimper, and always followed by a rush of guilt, and sometimes tears (from me.)

Today was one of those days.  I was feeding Henry his lunch, which is quite a task these days.  As I was feeding him carrots, a splatter fell onto his tray.  I have learned that Henry will play with anything and everything on his tray, especially food, so I stepped 5 feet away to grab a paper towel.  As I did, his spoon flipped off his tray onto the floor, splattering carrots all over the floor.  (Granted the cleaning ladies were there, but I didn't want to leave a huge orange mess for them to clean up--how rude!)  So I stepped the same 5 feet away to grab another paper towel.  This time, when I came back, I discovered Henry had dumped the entire container of carrots on his tray and was poised with his hands, ready to play.  My first instinct was to yell.  I did not give in, thank God.  Instead, I calmly took the tray off of his high chair and took it to the sink to wash it, my eyes brimming with tears.

These days, I feel invisible.  I've transitioned from the awkward teenage-young 20's female screaming "Notice me, notice me!" to the tired, strung-out Mama who just wants someone to whisper in my ear at night, "I see what you're doing."

I'm not cut out for this.

I never saw myself being a stay at home Mom.  And I'm really not.  I get out of the house 6-8 days a month to go work my paying job as an emergency room PA.

Being a mother is an impossible job.  When I'm at home, sometimes I would rather be at work.  When I'm at work, most of the time, I would rather be at home.

We were posed with a win-less situation.  No nanny, no family close to home, which meant no one trustworthy to stay with Henry.  So I made the biggest sacrifice of my life and decided to re-arrange my schedule and drop my hours so that I can stay home with Henry.  When I am posed with a no-win situation, I am always going to make the choice that gives Henry the best possible circumstances.  I made my decision and I don't regret it.  I would make the same decision one-hundred times over.


But I miss my job.  Most of all, I miss doing something completely independent.  I miss the look of gratitude and appreciation when I have truly helped a patient.  Calmed a mother's fears.  Taken away someone's pain.  I miss the admiration and respect that comes with my profession.

I traded this for days where I go hours without adult conversation.  Days where I'm lucky to squeeze a shower in, let alone blow dry and fix my hair.  Days where I never make it out of my pajamas, and I end up covered in baby foot.

No one told me how hard this would be, y'all.  Or maybe they did, but I tuned it out.

Before you jump to conclusions and start screaming, postpartum depression, let me just tell you: I am not depressed.  I have simply found myself in a situation I have never been in before.  This is motherhood.  Constantly adapting to the growth and change that each new day brings.  Learning alongside your child.  Being able to admit that you don't have all of the answers, but that you're taking each day as it comes and striving to make every day better than the last.

So, hats off to all of you truly stay-at-home-moms.  Being a mom is truly the hardest job.

So let me take this opportunity to introduce you to someone I know.  His name is El Roi.  His name means "The God Who Sees Me."  His name is only mentioned in one book of the Bible, in reference to Hagar's cries of desperation.  You see, Hagar was in a truly win-less situation.

First, she was asked by her boss, Sarai, to provide an heir for Sarai's husband, Abram.  After fulfilling her obligations, and becoming pregnant, Hagar became proud, and began treating Sarai with contempt.  So Sarai reciprocated.  She outdid herself.  Sarai mistreated Hagar so badly, that Hagar chose a desert over spending one more day under Sarai's roof.  In the desert, Hagar encountered the Angel of the Lord, who told her that she had conceived a son, to be named Ishmael, and comforted her that the Lord had heard her cries of affliction.  So Hagar called on El Roi, for He had seen her in that place.  Although Hagar returned to Abram and Sarai, as the Lord asked her to, a short time later, she would find herself in the desert again, this time accompanied by Ishmael.  As they were slowly dying of thirst, the Lord again appeared to Hagar and promised her that her banished son would become a great nation!

What an incredible story!  Ishmael was born out of Sarai's impatience and unbelief, that God could truly provide her with an heir.  Ishmael was born into jealousy, between two women, both desperately wanting to provide an heir for Abram, who would become the father of many nations.  Ishmael was left in the desert out of desperation, because Hagar couldn't bear to watch her son die.  And finally, Ishmael was rescued and redeemed, made into a great nation himself, by the God who Sees.

El Roi is truly the God who sees us, mothers.  Whether we are on our last thread as a stay at home mom, or beating our brows at work, or desperately clinging to our marriages, or raising a child alone, whatever the circumstances, call out to Him, for not only does He hear your cries, HE SEES YOU.

There is no greater comfort for me in this season of life than calling on the name of El Roi and knowing that not only does He hear me, he sees me exactly where I am.

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