what "they" can't tell you


Everyone tries, Lucy girl. Oh, Lord, how they try.

They try to tell you that when you become a mother, everything will change. That sleep will become an elusive creature whose presence will make you remember that you were once a living, breathing person and not a zombie. That time will stop and speed up. That you will never, ever be the same.

They'll also tell you about remedies for this illness or that, about why breastfeeding is best or actually not necessary, about how co-sleeping is dangerous and so are crib bumpers, and about how your body will never go back to the way it was.

I think the most important thing I've learned since becoming a mother is that people Never. Stop. Talking. And it's up to you whether or not you want to listen.

Lucy, love, t won't start when you get pregnant or when your first baby is born. It will start as soon as you make your own voice heard. Sometimes people will agree with you and other times they won't. Please don't be afraid to speak up, with grace and a little bit of gumption, and tell them how you feel. As long as you do it with both, you can't be held accountable for how they respond. You'll try because you care. But that will only make you frustrated and weary. 

So listen up: the only people we can control are ourselves. And that's hard enough.

At some point (maybe even now, if you're old enough to read and understand this), I will become one of "them" to you. My voice will put you on edge and you'll probably think I'm completely out of touch with reality. I'm okay with that (well, not really, but hopefully I will be by the time you feel that way). I'm not here to make you happy. Do I want you to be happy? Of course, I do. That's why I hug you and kiss you and sing to you and play silly games and make faces. To see you smile. To make you happy. To help you understand how much your papa and I adore you. But that's only part of why we're here. Your happiness is not our ultimate goal. Your peace is.

Unfortunately, peace is hard to come by. Our world is chaotic, and busy, and distracted. Things (especially iPhones) often get in the way of people, which means we'll have to fight to get your attention in ways my own parents never had to...but we'll find a way. Your peace is too important to cast aside along with the things we treasure for so fleeting a time. 

When you need a reminder of what is good and what is real, don't look to "them". The world. Your phone. Your computer. Your books (though I can't say I'll be disappointed if, in the throes of teen angst, you spend your days cooped up in your bedroom reading...just in case you're wondering, that is my preferred method of brooding). Your papa and I will give you reminders - and so will all your other loved ones - as much as we can. But while you're still listening to my voice, here's what I need you to do when the shit hits the fan:

Look up. Look to the One who made you. He can make sense of things that don't make sense. And even if He chooses not to (because He's God and sometimes He does that), trust that His ways are not ours and that's a good thing. We tend to make messes.

Lucy, I look at you and marvel every day. To think of how my body made yours - of how God designed my womb to carefully craft your every intricate detail - is nothing short of magnificent. And, I'll be honest, it's far too easy to forget that when schedules and work and to-do lists (and our damn iPhones) get in the way. Don't worry, though; we don't forget for too long. Because as easy as it can be to let our minds get caught up in the chaos, loving you is even easier. 

"They" won't tell you that. But we will. And so will He.

Day in and day out.

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