Sunday, November 10, 2013

From my heart's overflow.

You should be warned that it is way past my bedtime and I tend to get emotional when it is past my bedtime. My hubby is away and my little redhead is snuggled in my bed. I should be sleeping. But my heart overflows. And from the overflow...I type.

If you have visited me here before, you are sure to note that I type for many reasons. I type to process. I type to remember, to ponder. I type to capture the emotion and store it away for later. Because some days, some days are hard and I need to look back a bit and remember.

We celebrated Little Red's birthday all weekend. And it is the celebrating that I am pondering tonight. I love birthdays. I love celebrating the days that changed my life forever -- the days my children were born.

As a teenager, I often worried that I was not passionate about anything. Oh, I liked a lot of things. I enjoyed choir -- but I was far from the best singer. I loved theater -- but I was far from the best actress. I loved photography and reading, writing and even cross-stitching. And God even granted me abilities in some of those areas. But I feared I had no passion.

I worked at my hometown newspaper between college graduation and marriage...and loved that job. I was super excited to go to work and super excited to actually do the job! I didn't even mind eating generic cereal for every meal because my pay check was so small. I began to realize my passion.

And then I married Wade and we moved away from my hometown newspaper and the best job I was sure I would ever have.

In the early years of our marriage, I knew we would want children eventually but as the oldest of three, I was hesitant. I knew my shortcomings with my brothers. I knew how easily I had lost my cool with them when it was my summer job to watch them and keep them out of trouble. I knew that patience was right up there with my singing ability -- something I desired but came up lacking. What if it was the same with motherhood? Oh I was apprehensive.

And then when I was sure I was ready -- and my desire to have a baby outweighed the anxiety -- my body did not cooperate. And when after more than a year of disappointment, we found ourselves expecting THREE babies at once, I went into labor far too early and had weeks of laying in a hospital bed where every one around me was holding their collective breath that I would stay pregnant even ONE more day, much less the weeks my crew needed to survive.

When the trio were born, they each cried a little cry to let me know they were breathing on their own before being whisked to the Neonatal Intensive Care where I would not even get to see them for 24-hours. They would not leave the hospital with me from more than two months.

Eight years later, when baby Cate was born, she immediately cooed and babbled and let us know that she was breathing and talking. I was determined that if I had to use super glue no one was whisking her away from my side.

And so, April 18 and November 9 are not days like any other. Not for me. Those are two days when God said that in spite of my many shortcomings, He had chosen me for this incredible task, this job to rival all my jobs, this passion that fills me and drives me in all ways -- the role of mother to Benjamin, Mason, Claire and Cate (that's birth order, folks!).

And so tonight, I type, because I want to remember the gratitude that is welling up. I want to remember to be thankful in every hard moment of motherhood, in every delightful moment,  and every scary moment and all the moments in between. I type because I know that this gift of celebrating BIRTH is one I never want to take for granted. I pray that I can celebrate these beautiful birthdays for many many years to come -- always always thanking God for allowing me to be the mommy to these four.

There are pictures to come. There are funny stories to share. But tonight is for words. Tonight is to thank God for the best job I could ever imagine, the greatest passion on earth and the blessings that are my Benjamin, Mason, Claire and Cate.