May 14, 2017. What a day filled with so much emotion. It is my grandma's birthday, my mom's mom - our rock. It is my nephew's birthday, who has officially turned 15 years old - the age I was when he was born and my family's world was so beautifully changed forever. It is also my first "official" Mother's Day, though I very much felt like a mother last year when my Lion was still a part of me... forming, developing, growing, waiting to meet the world.
Today, my family headed to our new little church in a very old firehouse in downtown Lansing where Judah watched his parents praise God and his daddy preach the Gospel of Jesus. My heart jumped each time I saw him from "stage" as he embraced our community while they watched over him while we led. We came home and, while Judah slept, Anthony & I ate leftovers from the amazing pasta dinner he made last night for Mother's Day. Anth took over baby-food making for me so I could spend the day with my little Lion... because, honestly, I'm just not to the point in motherhood where I'm looking for a day off. The most I can look forward to being away is this bath I'm in right now - my one hour to shave my legs, have a beer, and try to smell slightly better than I do 9/10 days. And even now, as I type, I miss him. I want to be with him every chance I get because I know the day is soon coming where he will pull away.
So, for now, I soak. I soak in this bath, yes, but I soak in his innocence and love. I soak in his joy and trust. And as I do, I am consistently reminded of the Father's love for us. That, though I have grown and married and pulled away from my earthly parents, I am still very much a child of God in need of her Daddy/Mommy (because let's get real - He is both).
Being a mother is the purest experience of love I've ever known. The love I have for my son is other-worldly. I couldn't start to explain it even if I tried. The level of love I have found for my sweet husband in the parenting process is something I expected but could not prepare myself for. The love and appreciation I now I have for my own mother and father, my husband's mother and father, and their mothers and fathers before them hits me like a wave time and time again as I wake 2-3 times each night to feed and soothe my son. It hit during a very sick pregnancy and 26 hours of labor. It hit when I experienced what it was like to work full-time in a job I did not enjoy while I missed my baby 75% of the week simply so I could do my part in providing for my family. It hits every time I am overwhelmed with worry or joy or love just by looking at him. Entering motherhood has changed me and I am so undeniably grateful.
Judah Lionheart, you made me a Mama. You have marked my heart and my life and I am forever a better version of myself simply because you are here. The person I am in this moment, with my still soft stomach with the still pink stretch marks, is such a gift. Your Papa's blue eyes, your little button nose, your crooked little smile with your fangs, your strawberry blonde hair that's starting to curl, your rolly little limbs, your big, squealy belly laugh, your grunts and whistles and sweet little sighs... you, my Lion, are a world changer and so completely and incomprehensibly loved from the purest, deepest place of my being.
Thank you, Lord, for this gift. I didn't truly understand Your love and generosity until now. What You have given me in my son and through the price Your Son paid on the cross is something I will never again take for granted. I am moved to my core and I love You.
To all you moms and dads out there, Happy parenthood days! It truly is a miracle.