13 Weeks Ago: Lessons, Rules, Relationships

13 weeks ago our Little Lady made her grand entrance into our world. She is growing far too fast. She, in combination with the boys, is a sharp reminder of how fast time passes. My baby boy is a month away from his 6th birthday, and Little Lady is already 1/4 of a year old.

This makes my heart sad some days.

I’ve been getting so wrapped up in teaching these kids that I’m wearing myself out. I’m looking for a lesson in everything and constantly trying to do good enough as a mom. I am plagued by this driving force of the “be good enough” and it is exhausting.

This checklist is running in my head all of the time, it is this constant nagging of whether or not I’m teaching them enough. The things I ask myself: Am I teaching them enough history? Are they learning enough math? Respect? Obedience? Responsibility? Discipline? Self care? Are they learning about God? Learning scripture? Praying enough?

Rules, rules, rules. I’m taking my own passion for parenting out of the mix by trying to come up with the perfect mix.

These are good questions, and living life together is the best instructor. Them watching me, relating with me, growing up in an environment full of opportunities for learning, is great. But when it turns into a check list that drains Mom of all her energy, things are a bit “off”.

At LifeChurch.tv, Pastor Craig said “Rules without relationship leads to rebellion.” Now, this didn’t sink in for almost a week. I kind of brushed it off, really. Yet, I’m sitting here soaking in how true it is.

The most important thing I can impart to these kids is my support, love and relationship. Sure, I think some structure is good for all of us. But if I can help them grasp that God loves them and wants to know them personally, by having and sharing my own relationship with Him, then that will take them further in life than any lesson I can teach.

If I can also communicate openly with them, answering most of their questions, listening to their dreams and desires and thoughts, and sharing my own with them, I will build a healthy relationship with them. And if they are close to God, and have a healthy relationship with me, then they will be prepared to have healthy relationships with the people they encounter throughout life.

I think, instead of stressing myself out about every single moment being a teaching moment, I’ll cuddle them a little closer, listen a little more, and worry a little less. And I’ll pray a little more, because God doesn’t expect us to do this on our own.

Have you ever worried yourself over whether or not your making the most of the teaching moments?


6 Weeks Ago

6 weeks and one day ago, we were a family of 6. Then, our sweet girl arrived, making us a family of 7. Life will never be the same, but that’s a good thing, because she has improved life in so many ways.

6 weeks old has always been a “favorite” stage of mine. I’m not exactly sure why, but I think it has something to do with realizing how quickly time is passing. When my firstborn turned 7 weeks old, I cried because 6 weeks was gone. When the next turned 7 weeks old, my heart was heavy because 6 weeks was gone.

Today starts 6 weeks, and I am marveling at this little girl. I am torn between the fact that she’s only been here for 6 weeks, and feeling like she has forever been apart of us. She doesn’t have that newborn look anymore, she stays awake quite a bit, and still needs lots of cuddle time.

We have as much of a routine as I ever get going. We can concur school, most of the major housework (there are always a few cobwebs that get missed…), and even run errands. The boys are all used to her, and have their own ways of helping with her, or the house.

Time is fleeting though. She is changing every day, and she brings to life the reality of how big all of these boys are. I will embrace this week, as I hope I’ve done well with the ones past, and will do with the future weeks. I will try to not be weepy next Monday, when I realize this week is over.

I will wear this sweet girl in our sling as long as she’ll let me. Because the truth is, for as much as she needs me and cries for me, I need her too. She was my go-everywhere-buddy for 9 months. Adjusting to not having her growing and kicking on the inside takes a little while, just like she has to adjust to being outside, too.

Maybe, one of these days, I’ll finish her birth story too. It truly is beautiful and I think about her grand entrance into our lives quite often.

What is happening in your life that makes you realize how quickly time passes? Are you taking these moments for granted or embracing them?