The Mundane Morning and The Truth

There is a routine that happens during the fall/winter mornings at my house.
I confess, it’s pretty sad.

It begins with my alarm going off multiple times.
I set 4 different ones.
This is after my husband’s has already gone off.
And 99% of the time, I still don’t wake up until he comes to gently nudge me awake, encouraging me to get up before I am late again.

For the record – I am always late again.

In a rush I get up, get dressed, get my make up on, rush to prepare my lunch, check to make sure the manchild has everything he needs for school. Without fail, I always forget something.
My water. My coffee. My lunch bag. My phone. My breakfast shake.

Finally with everything in tow, our manchild calls out to his dad
“love you dad, hope you have a good day!”
My husband wishes him a good day at school and calls out “Love you too”.
Then I give my hubs a good-bye kiss and follow the manchild out the door.

Getting into the actual car becomes another whole ordeal.

Holding a water bottle, a coffee cup, a purse, a breakfast shake,
and a lunch bag proves to be too much.
Without a word, I hold out my coffee cup to the manchild
who takes it and places it in the cupholder.
Then he takes the water bottle while I twist and turn to set my bags in the back.
Most mornings he or my husband have already cranked the car, so it’s warm and defrosted.
On the rare morning they don’t, at this point my son and I scramble back out of the car to wipe and scrape off any snow or ice.

Once we are in and actually ready to take off,
he is in charge of making sure my coffee doesn’t spill.
He turns on the radio, I drink my breakfast down.
Then I’ll toss the empty shake cup down and reach my hand out, he hands me my coffee.
After a bit of coffee we may pray together about the day ahead, or just chit-chat.
Sometimes we sing along to the radio, or we laugh and poke fun
at each other about who made who late.
Some mornings one or the other or both of us are grumpy, maybe instead of “I love yous” we left the house with harsh words and criticism.
Those mornings we ride in silence until it’s time for him to get out of the car.
No matter what, he always turns down the radio as he gets out of the car,
I always say “love you, have a good day”.
And he says “love you too, bye”.

Last week, in the midst of one of these mornings
when we reached the point he was handing me my coffee,
after protecting it from spilling as we bumped over all the potholes on the dirt road,
it struck me.

aaaaaa

I’ll only be taking him to school for two and half more years.
A little less if he has a car to drive himself his senior year.

At the stop sign, as he was checking with his head turned away from me
calling out “nothings coming”, I just took the moment in.
The rushing. The hecticness. The frustration and the laughter at it.
The reality that these mornings are coming to their end, this season of our lives together
as parents and child is winding down.
I took a deep breath to steady my emotions and pulled onto the road.
In the quiet I said gently, “I’m going to miss these mornings with you kid.”

Because it’s true. I am.

I only have one biological child, this manchild of mine. My husband adopted him,
he’s our son growing into a young man.
I have a step-daughter who is already out in the adult world with her own son.
In a few years time my husband and I will enter into what people call “the empty nest”.

Which is a lie. 

That’s what the Lord has laid on my heart these last several months.
You see, my husband and I will not have an empty nest, because we are still here.
He and I, we are the ones who will be living in this nest of ours.
With a puppy, a kitty. And the fish if I can remember to feed them. (RIP greenie).

I was too young when I had my son. The teenage mother statistic.
The truth is, I’ve never been an adult without being a mom.
It’s terrifying to think about.
My entire “adult” life, every decision I made, every thing I did,
I had to consider this son of mine.
I didn’t do it perfectly by any means.
I have volumes I could share with you on all the wrong things a parent can do
because I’ve done it.
However, I did try my very best. I still do.

So as my son is preparing to step out into the adult world, in a way, I am too.
For the first time, I’ll be an adult without a child at home.
My husband and I will have a wide open future before us.
Which is why I think the Lord is telling me to start nesting.

Preparing the nest for the hubs and I. 

I remember nesting before my son was born.
It was instinctual. A God given instinct to prepare myself
and the space I had to bring this boy into the world.
Now I am nesting because my son is becoming an adult.
This is a God given instruction to my heart,
to prepare myself and the space I share with my husband
as we prepare to release this manchild into adulthood.

I don’t fully know what this will look like. I just know that it’s happening.
Writing helps me to process things, and this life transition is both painful and exciting.
My mother’s heart is sad and struggling with what life will look like
when the manchild is no longer in this nest.
My wife’s heart is excited about the future adventures with my husband,
the two of us having precious time together we’ve never had before.

I know I’m not alone in this life transition.

In the upcoming years I am praying the Lord will place women in my path who have gone down it before me, who can encourage me and lift me up.
I have women in my life who are going through it at the same time as I am,
and I am praying we will be an encouragement to one another.
All this so that ultimately, one day, I will be the woman who has gone through it
and can love on a younger sister facing it.

I guess that’s why I’m choosing to blog about this.
To tell the mother hearts out there, your nest is not empty, and you are not alone. 

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Feminine Appeal: GET THIS BOOK WOMEN

HerReadingHave you ever read a book and find yourself telling people, “I seriously recommend THIS book“? A book you go back to, re-read, and use as a tool to check your clarity and intention?

Be prepared.
Because this book review is about THAT kind of book.

The book is Feminine Appeal: Seven Virtues of a Godly Wife and Mother by Carolyn Mahaney.

 

The title alone had me intrigued.

The foreword is written by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, and while I’m not always a fan of name dropping, I’m dropping this one because I typically skip over the foreword and jump straight to the meat of a book. Seeing DeMoss take the time to write the foreword however slowed me down. It got me pumped. It got me thinking about what it means to be a woman. So don’t skip the foreword. It’s a great start to the journey you are about to take with this one. Continue reading “Feminine Appeal: GET THIS BOOK WOMEN”

Someday He Will Love You More

A few months ago I read a letter from a mother of a young son to her future daughter-in-law. As I read it, my heart broke. The mother was very clear that her future daughter-in-law would know her place, would never interfere between mother and son, and would always be second to her until the day she passed away.

That letter has randomly picked my thoughts since I read it. The more I thought about it, the more I felt like I wanted to write my own letter. So here it is.

Dear Future Daughter-In-Law,

Selfishly, I hope we someday meet. I say selfishly because I want to be a “Grammie” someday. I want to hear the sound of little feet running through the house again. I want to hear giggles and babbling and “Grammie, Grampie, look what I can do!”

That’s only my selfish little reason though. The truth is, I know if my son meets you, falls in love with you, that he will someday love you more. I pray he loves you more. I pray he marries you wanting to provide for you, protect you, and love you with the sacrificial love of Christ. I pray he lifts you up above all other women and provides you Godly wisdom and counsel. I pray he never makes you feel “unworthy”, or “less than” because you are a woman. That instead, he will make you feel like the wonderful creation by God in which you are. A woman. Beautiful. Wonderful. 

I pray in return you will love him more. More than your own parents. More than your friends. More than any children you may have. I pray you will love him with a tender compassionate love. Lifting him above all other men. That you will want to be his helpmate, his partner, his prayer warrior. 

I promise his father and I will continue to do our best to raise him in the way he should go. To teach him compassion and mercy. To teach him his strengths and how to honor God and you with them. To teach him self-control, kindness, patience, and most importantly love. 

I also promise his father and I will continue to learn how to love one another more. To show him God’s design for marriage. Union. Oneness. I pray your parents are doing the same. Teaching you the awe and wonder and beauty of marriage. I pray God’s grace will cover both you and our son for the shortcomings of parents. We will promise to teach him all we can while he is with us, however, we won’t always be perfect. I’m sure he will share stories with you about our imperfections. I pray they are few.

I pray you know the Lord. I pray you know Him and love Him more than my son. I pray my son loves the Lord more than you. I pray the love you both have for our Savior will bind you stronger to one another. Because storms will arise. Pain will come. There will be arguments and hurt feelings and words said you wish you could take back. It happens to us all. Remember, there is forgiveness. We promise to teach him about forgiveness, to teach him to not hold onto grudges, to teach him confession and repentance and reconciliation. We promise to be here for you both. To take no one’s side except for God’s side. To always speak truth to you, pray with you, and share whatever life experience we have with you. Please understand, when we feel you are in error we will honestly and gently and lovingly explain why. Know that we will continue to do the same with our son.

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We will strive to not interfere and respect your decisions if you become parents. If you don’t want your children drinking soda, we promise to not sneak it to them when you aren’t around. We will honor our relationship with you with integrity and trust and love. Our grandchildren will know there are no secrets from mommy or daddy. We will not go out of our way to undermine you or spoil them in ways you disagree with. Although, I selfishly ask you let us spoil them sometimes in ways you approve of, as reward for raising our son. 

Understanding you have parents too, praying that you have parents you are close with and love dearly, we will never expect you to spend every holiday with us. We will ask that we get every other if it’s possible. If distance separates us we promise to not always expect you to come to us. We will come to you as well.  If we all live close enough together we will gladly share holidays as one huge family. We promise to be kind and respectful of your parents. We would enjoy getting to know them and sharing life with them. 

If your parents have already passed on from this life, or if you have pain with them, we promise to be understanding of that. To pray with you about it, to love you, and to welcome you always with open arms. To love you as a daughter. We will never replace your parents and we would never want to, however, we would love to be an addition. We want you to be comfortable enough to call us whenever you have a need. To come and spend evenings of laughter and card games. To take family vacations together. To know you are loved and cherished as our daughter in law. 

We promise to remember your birthday. We promise to help you move when you need to move. To help give you a break by watching the children so you and our son can spend the precious needed time together as husband and wife. I pray the two of you never stop dating. We promise to live out this example for him. 

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I hope you and I can be close friends. Share coffee. Lunches. Trips. Prayers. Studies. Recipes. Dreams. Hopes. Praises. I hope we can enjoy our times together as mother- and daughter-in-law. I hope you never feel threatened by me. I hope you never feel undermined by me. I hope you never feel inferior to me. I promise to never do anything intentional to make you feel that way. I pray our communication with one another will always be open and honest so we can encourage and uplift one another as women. As you and my son create your own family traditions, I hope we can be apart of them as well. We hope you will always be a part of ours. 

I pray the Lord is watching over you right now. Protecting you. Loving you. You may be a young girl. A woman-child. If so, these next few years are hard ones. I remember. We are watching our son go through them. We promise to help him as best we can to navigate these rough waters so he comes out the other side not weighed down by past mistakes. I pray you have someone in your life right now who is doing the same for you. Someone you can come home to and cry on their shoulder when you’ve had a bad day. I pray you have a warm home, a safe place, and that you are learning Jesus is always a safe resting place. I pray you laugh often. I pray you look in the mirror and see the beauty the Lord gave you. That the pressures of the world’s beauty do not hurt you. I pray if these next few years are hard for you, that you will come to know His Grace. I pray if you make some mistakes, you will not lose hope. That no matter what, you are never alone, for you know He is always with you and I pray that He sends His people to always be with you too. 

I don’t know when we’ll meet you. I pray someday we meet you. I pray long healthy happy lives for both you and our son. I pray we come to know you. I pray we watch your father give you away on your wedding day. I pray we sit, probably bawling our eyes out from happiness, watching the look of awe, wonder, and love in our son’s eyes as he takes your hand to be his wife. 

So, until I meet you, whoever or where-ever you may be, I will pray for you. I will pray for you after I meet you. We promise, his father and I, to always pray for you both for as long as we are here. To love you both. To help you both in whatever ways we can. Because someday, he’ll love you more. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. That is what will bring the most joy to this mother’s heart, is for my son to love you more. 

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In Love & Faith,
RaZella

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