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Has it already been 6 months?!

I look at my son bouncing and playing in his exersaucer and am simply amazed. Just 6 months old…half way to a year!

A year ago, I had just found out I was pregnant with him. It felt like today was forever away, but it came as soon as I blinked. I still look at him and think, “Are you really here? Am I really a mom?” At the same time, it seems like he’s always been here, like I can’t remember when he wasn’t a part of our lives.

Sometimes when I hold him, I can’t help but cover him in kisses or squeeze him close. I love to cuddle him and pat or rub his back and feel him lean on my shoulder and sigh contentedly. I could just stay that way for-ev-er!

His smiles light up my whole day! He doesn’t even have to be doing anything special for me to want to hug him. He’s just naturally squeezable! 🙂

And this makes me wonder if God ever feels that way about us. Is this an aspect of His love that He could only reveal to me through parenthood? I’d like to think that this new kind of love that I’m experiencing is a reflection of God’s love for me. That my experiences as a mom is an echo of God’s relationship with me as my Heavenly Father.

Can you picture God looking into your face and bursting out, “Ooooohhh, I just love you SO MUCH!!!!” Can you imagine God wanting to scoop you up in His arms and give you a big squeeze and a kiss in the middle of your day? What if your smile fills His heart with joy?

Try and visualize that next time you look at your child. 🙂

I wonder if other moms compare themselves like I do. I compare myself to other moms, but even more harshly, I compare current self to my pre-baby self.

I forget more things now. Before I had a baby, I was a fantastic multitasker…I could answer phones, send emails, file paperwork, and mail merge labels all at the same time. Now, I can soothe a crying baby, get him buckled in his car seat, and…realize that I forgot my purse in the house.

I don’t accomplish as much as I used to. I used to write out my lists – things to do, what I need at which stores – and cross them all out. Now, I start cooking dinner…and ask Hubby to take over so I can feed the baby. I start folding laundry…and then I leave it piled on the couch because the baby needs to be changed.

I also get distracted more easily. I start getting dressed in the morning, then remember I have to pack my lunch, then I have to get the baby dressed… By time I’m ready to leave the house, I realize I’m still in my pajama pants or forgot to put on deodorant.

And of course, I feel as though I’m the only one going through this. I’m the only one who’s trying to balance being a mom and a wife, who’s trying to work and take care of the house, whose hair hasn’t been washed in days, or who feels like everyone else is doing this better than me.

Thankfully, I have friends who are moms and are not afraid of being real and honest about life. Talking about and doing life with them has taught me two things:

  1. I can’t expect my life to be the same as it was before Baby Boy was born. Things have changed. Forever. That’s just life, and it’s ok.
  2. All that stuff I’ve been venting about? Welcome to motherhood. It’s tough and it’s messy and it requires grace.

So, I want to officially put this out there for those of you who are living in the mindset that everyone else has it all together: they don’t!

You are not the only one hiding baskets of laundry behind the closed door of the guest room. You are not the only one desperately vacuuming five minutes before company is due at your house. You are not the only one with piles of mail and papers that you don’t have time or energy to go through. You are not the only one whose bathroom faucet is splattered with toothpaste or floor is covered in your hair (especially if you’re experiencing postpartum shedding).

You’re not the only one.

I’m not saying this is a free pass to give up. I just want to encourage you, as you fight for breaths in between nap times, to not give up. If you’re doing the best you can, no one can ask any more of you than that.

So cut yourself a big slice of slack and top it with a heaping scoop of grace – it goes well with coffee.

*Ah-choo*

Please excuse me a moment while I dust off these keys…

So, apparently having a baby is everything everyone ever told me it would be: time-consuming, stressful, sleep-depriving, busy, really busy, scary, confusing, messy…

And absolutely wonderful!

In the past five months, my whole world has been turned upside down, shaken senseless, and re-prioritized. Some parts have been downright painful (like labor, delivery, nursing, and hormonally-driven emotional surges), but there are other parts that have been just…amazing. Completely, breathtakingly amazing.

Before the birth of my son, nothing and no one would make me understand what it’s like to be the mother a chubby, toothless wonder that has stolen your heart away by doing nothing else but simply existing. Or that I’ll actually be OK with being pooped on, peed on, vomited on, drooled on, chewed on, and bit by him, because he’s got the most beautiful toothless smile you’ve ever seen. I’ve heard at least two people describe motherhood as “watching your heart walk around outside your body,” which I have personally found to be true.

Of course, it’s not all lollipops and rainbows over at my house – don’t get me wrong. My laundry has piled up, the floors need to be scrubbed, my bed hasn’t been made since…yeah, let’s not go there, and you probably shouldn’t turn on the light if you want to use my bathroom. My husband and I haven’t fought this much in a five-month time span since we were engaged while living 1,300 miles apart. I don’t think I’ve ever cried so much in my life, and don’t get me started on the list of things that nobody tells you about when you’re pregnant.

But, I am surviving and, dare I say, thriving by the grace of God. His grace keeps me going. It allows me to soothe the crying baby when all I want is for someone to hold me so I can have my own good cry. It helps me get dinner on the table when I want to just crawl under the covers and hope my messy house will just go away. It shows me how to love and respect my husband when we’re both sleep-deprived and cranky. It lets me be OK with the fact that there is no manual for being a parent.

I have a feeling I’m going to be spending a lot of space on this blog processing what I’m going through and learning, now that I’m a mother. Some people may find it to be just another mom blog, but I hope that for some it will be an encouragement. Maybe you’ll relate, maybe you’ll get some insight, maybe you’ll even have some advice for me. However it happens, my life is forever changed because five months ago my son was born, and there’s no going back. So here I go…