Friday, June 14, 2013

on motherhood

Wow. Has life been full. That's my less-annoying term for "busy".
I have been wanting to write this down for some time now, and this morning, I left the girls with their sleepy daddy and snuck out to Starbucks to have a (free! bring in an empty bag of coffee) cup of coffee and just sit and write. Thankful for the opportunity.

Motherhood is officially the most challenging thing I've done so far.
And it's also the strangest - because it's at the same time my most favorite thing I've done so far.

How can it be that I want someone to go to sleep SO badly, and then when they do - I miss them?

How can it be that the person that pushes me to my wit's end with inquisitiveness and persistence - is the same person I would choose to hang out with above pretty much anyone else in the world?

I am sure that the answer to those questions is love.
I am sure that it's not just any love, it's a mother's love.

I have realized lately that women put WAY too many expectations on themselves. Because when we look around, we see image after image, on the internet, billboards, magazines, of absolutely perfect homes, flawless bodies, long flowing hair, beautifully dressed children. And we get the false idea of oh my gosh, that's what motherhood looks like. Or can look like. And we look around in our own life and start making changes out of stress and out of response to a falsehood that we are using as a standard to judge our own life. Suddenly, our children, our joy, turn into somewhat of a burden. They are totally in the way of me trying to clean my house. They are so annoying while I'm trying to make dinner. They are so needy, and I'm just trying to get dressed and ready.

Oh, how sad.
It's not them, it's not their fault - it's us. It's me.
They are being children. They ARE needy, because they can't do what I can do, so they need me. To teach them how. Or do it for them until they can.

I think about the seed I am sowing into them. Are they seeds of gentleness and kindness and reality of what is important? Or are they seeds of stress and frustration that things aren't going the picture-perfect way I'd like?
The fastest way to judge what type of seed you are sowing into your children is to look at the harvest in their lives. Are they short/frustrated? Are they selfish? Are they whiny? They are a product of their environment and their relationships and that reality is so very humbling. Sure, kids are kids, but that's the whole point of our job - to shape and mold them into being respectful, kind, giving human beings.

My sister said the best thing I've ever heard on motherhood, and parenting in general, yesterday on the phone. She said "it's supposed to be hard - it's the refining fire."
and I wanted to cry right there on the spot. Because I got it. It hit me - all of this, all the highs and lows, all the messy rooms, and piles of dirty laundry, and screaming babies and missed marks of perfection is how it's SUPPOSED TO BE! Because through all of that, in the middle of all of that, Christ is doing His perfect work.

That little line opened the floodgates for me. I now see motherhood completely different. It's not huge waves attacking and suffocating me, it's huge waves that I boldly swim into. That I choose to swim into because I know my Savior will not let me drown. Just think of the character He is building in you when you let go of control and line up with His will and His desire!
This is such a beautiful calling.
And I refuse to let this challenging and wonderful season be ruined by a false idea of what it should be and falling short and feeling disgruntled because of that. A challenge is a challenge because of what it produces in the end.

So that's it-
It's supposed to be hard.
Let go and embrace and enjoy the process of Him changing you.

I know my family is going to love reaping the benefits of this revelation - a much happier Momma! :)

6 comments:

JMKiehn said...

AMEN, so well said, I love you my daughter, you keep going forward they are following you and loving every minute.

Leslie said...

BEAUTIFUL WORDS!! Jessica, you have a writing gift. I was literally getting jealous and comparing my inability to your ability as I was reading this. That was ironic because the post was about not being perfect and comparing!

jessica kiehn said...

Leslie, you are an excellent writer, and don't spend another second believing otherwise.

{annie_loo} @ The Farrar Four said...

sister! you are speaking to me loud and clear. i so needed this today as I'm having all of these negative feelings about how it "SHOULD" be. THank you for this! I believe I will print it off and keep it in my bible for good reminder! Love you girl! THANK YOU!

Sheryl said...

So beautiful! Your wisdom is profound. Your gift of being a mother is a huge blessing to your girls (and many others!). Keep being beautifully you.

sararosie said...

So well said!! I am in total agreement and am so happy we can enjoy our families the way Yahweh intended!

Friday, June 14, 2013

on motherhood

Wow. Has life been full. That's my less-annoying term for "busy".
I have been wanting to write this down for some time now, and this morning, I left the girls with their sleepy daddy and snuck out to Starbucks to have a (free! bring in an empty bag of coffee) cup of coffee and just sit and write. Thankful for the opportunity.

Motherhood is officially the most challenging thing I've done so far.
And it's also the strangest - because it's at the same time my most favorite thing I've done so far.

How can it be that I want someone to go to sleep SO badly, and then when they do - I miss them?

How can it be that the person that pushes me to my wit's end with inquisitiveness and persistence - is the same person I would choose to hang out with above pretty much anyone else in the world?

I am sure that the answer to those questions is love.
I am sure that it's not just any love, it's a mother's love.

I have realized lately that women put WAY too many expectations on themselves. Because when we look around, we see image after image, on the internet, billboards, magazines, of absolutely perfect homes, flawless bodies, long flowing hair, beautifully dressed children. And we get the false idea of oh my gosh, that's what motherhood looks like. Or can look like. And we look around in our own life and start making changes out of stress and out of response to a falsehood that we are using as a standard to judge our own life. Suddenly, our children, our joy, turn into somewhat of a burden. They are totally in the way of me trying to clean my house. They are so annoying while I'm trying to make dinner. They are so needy, and I'm just trying to get dressed and ready.

Oh, how sad.
It's not them, it's not their fault - it's us. It's me.
They are being children. They ARE needy, because they can't do what I can do, so they need me. To teach them how. Or do it for them until they can.

I think about the seed I am sowing into them. Are they seeds of gentleness and kindness and reality of what is important? Or are they seeds of stress and frustration that things aren't going the picture-perfect way I'd like?
The fastest way to judge what type of seed you are sowing into your children is to look at the harvest in their lives. Are they short/frustrated? Are they selfish? Are they whiny? They are a product of their environment and their relationships and that reality is so very humbling. Sure, kids are kids, but that's the whole point of our job - to shape and mold them into being respectful, kind, giving human beings.

My sister said the best thing I've ever heard on motherhood, and parenting in general, yesterday on the phone. She said "it's supposed to be hard - it's the refining fire."
and I wanted to cry right there on the spot. Because I got it. It hit me - all of this, all the highs and lows, all the messy rooms, and piles of dirty laundry, and screaming babies and missed marks of perfection is how it's SUPPOSED TO BE! Because through all of that, in the middle of all of that, Christ is doing His perfect work.

That little line opened the floodgates for me. I now see motherhood completely different. It's not huge waves attacking and suffocating me, it's huge waves that I boldly swim into. That I choose to swim into because I know my Savior will not let me drown. Just think of the character He is building in you when you let go of control and line up with His will and His desire!
This is such a beautiful calling.
And I refuse to let this challenging and wonderful season be ruined by a false idea of what it should be and falling short and feeling disgruntled because of that. A challenge is a challenge because of what it produces in the end.

So that's it-
It's supposed to be hard.
Let go and embrace and enjoy the process of Him changing you.

I know my family is going to love reaping the benefits of this revelation - a much happier Momma! :)

6 comments:

JMKiehn said...

AMEN, so well said, I love you my daughter, you keep going forward they are following you and loving every minute.

Leslie said...

BEAUTIFUL WORDS!! Jessica, you have a writing gift. I was literally getting jealous and comparing my inability to your ability as I was reading this. That was ironic because the post was about not being perfect and comparing!

jessica kiehn said...

Leslie, you are an excellent writer, and don't spend another second believing otherwise.

{annie_loo} @ The Farrar Four said...

sister! you are speaking to me loud and clear. i so needed this today as I'm having all of these negative feelings about how it "SHOULD" be. THank you for this! I believe I will print it off and keep it in my bible for good reminder! Love you girl! THANK YOU!

Sheryl said...

So beautiful! Your wisdom is profound. Your gift of being a mother is a huge blessing to your girls (and many others!). Keep being beautifully you.

sararosie said...

So well said!! I am in total agreement and am so happy we can enjoy our families the way Yahweh intended!