Friday, May 6, 2011

because Mother's Day can be hard

Sometimes, in the midst of this new normal, I forget what it was like. Who I was then.

That time when emotions were always bubbling right at the if they could spill over at any given moment. And they often did. The days when an unmet desire left me aching and in tears. The years when the unknown was a hard, bitter pill to swallow. Those nights when my tired and broken heart whispered prayers to my Father in the dark.

Prayers for a child.

For me {and for many of you, I'm sure}, tiny scars of that time remain on my heart - but the pain of it is long, long gone. Those scars occasionally twinge as a memory surfaces and, in a good way, they don't let me forget. I'm thankful for those little reminders because I don't want to forget.

God, too, wants me to remember. Always.

In that time of loneliness and hurt and unknown, He was there. He held on when I wrestled Him and pulled away. He replaced my fear with His precious promises to love me and do what He knew was best.

God reminded me this was all for His glory.

And he forgave the jealousy and doubt and anger....the list could go on and on.

He seasoned me and waited until His time and then he gave me a son. He choose me to be Josiah's mom. Our beautiful boy was meant to be ours.

Had things been different, had I been the one deciding the plans of my life, I now wouldn't be holding him. That thought alone brings tears to my eyes.

I'm so thankful to be the mama to this amazing two-year-old. I pick up stray socks and calm fears and read books before naptime. I giggle with him and kiss his cheeks and buckle him into his car seat.

Motherhood is my new {imperfect, but wonderful} normal...but it doesn't take much to bring me back to the chapter of life before this. I've chatted before about the power of the quiet moments - tucking him in at bedtime or when we're rocking or sitting together on the back patio - that I find myself overwhelmed with gratefulness as I remember the girl I was, not too long ago. The one who felt sad and alone. The one whose arms were empty. The girl I wrote a letter to.

What I wouldn't do to give her a hug. To sit with her, hold her hand and share what I know and feel now.

In the past 3 years, I have received countless e-mails that contained questions about adoption or infertility or requests for prayer {these notes, too, serve as littler reminders to not forget}. A few of these gals are friends or acquaintances, but most were strangers met through this blog. Strangers before, but now sisters.

So many of these ladies expressed the lonliness that comes with waiting for a child.

Loneliness is the pits, I know. But when you can vent and share and even find joy in the learn quickly that you aren't so alone after all. I can't give my former self a hug or a hand, but I can offer one to you sisters. I can write out my story and share struggles and where I find peace. I can say that I get it. Because I do.

So yes, sometimes I forget because I'm now in this season of motherhood. But I find myself thankful for the continuous stream of reminders.

A few months ago, I was running errands and heard the song below while pulling into a parking space. I listened and cried tears -partly because of the journey, but mostly because of the truth of the words.

God cares. He gives and withholds. And He knows best.

He heals.

He loves. Oh how He loves....

If you find yourself waiting, please know that you're not alone....that you are not forgotten.

I pray that you would embrace the moments and gift of each day and not let them pass by without joy and praise {I failed at this a lot}. Life in a "waiting room" can be so difficult, but it is not broken or unblessed.....but rather filled with purpose and hope.

Mother's Day is in just a few days. And Mother's Day can be hard. For many women, the day will weigh heavy and you'll want it to pass quickly. I know because I felt the same way. But even if you won't receive flowers or hand prints on a card or a hug from a child, you are still loved and celebrated.

I hope that you feel peace in the journey.

And I truly hope that you are blessed with your heart's desire.


  1. Rachel~
    Thank you for being a "sister" and posting this absolutely beautiful post!!!! Have a wonderful Mother's Day!!! I know I will be holding my little guy tight feeling grateful this mother's day to be a mom!!!


  2. Rach~ Almost 18 years ago before Elizabeth became part of out life and then of course our Phil.

    I still remember those days. Sitting in church crying because of the Mother's day sermon, mother's and their children. Talking of their monther's day plans. And not living by my own my was even harder. But "He" was there holding me up, wiping my tears, making me strong and just making me wait a little longer for those 2 kiddos to come into our lives. I also can't imagine my life without them or I think if we did not do the adoption thing what would of happened to them.

    Many blessings to you dear friend on Mother's Day and always!!!!

    Love to you !!!

  3. This was really breathtakingly beautiful! You have such a way with words. I'm going to link to your post for my mother's day post!

  4. Rachel,
    You don't know me but I have been following your blog for sometime now and love watching sweet Si grow! My husband and I just came home with our daughter, Evelyn, from Korea 2 months ago and this will be my first Mother's Day...ever! I am so thrilled to finally be able to celebrate this day after 8 long years and it looks like you understand exactly what I mean! I love this post and it brought tears to my eyes. That is exactly where I have been for the last 8 Mother's Days and it is good to be reminded...God is so good and has always been there. Thank you for sharing!
    Happy Mother's Day!!!

    Amy O'Mara

  5. Thank you for such a beautiful post. It was a great reminder that the past was not that long ago. As I sit here now with my 2 beautiful boys I am very blessed. The journey was long and hard, but worth every step, I would never choose a different route that led me to the family I have.

  6. Rachel, once again you know just what to say and beautifully so. I know the feeling of having a pit in your stomach on Mother's Day when you're waiting to be a mother yourself. I will not take this mother's day for granted, that's for sure. Thanks for the reminder, my friend.

  7. "Had things been different, had I been the one deciding the plans of my life, I now wouldn't be holding him."

    Recently I realized that if I had given birth to a child, I would not have adopted and I would never have heard my son laugh. And that literally brought me to my knees, sobbing, realizing how short-sighed I can be and how amazing, awesome, loving, wonderful is our God.

    Wonderful song and a very beautiful post. It isn't always easy to remember - it hurts to go back to that time - but it does help to keep our eyes focused on Him.

    Happy Mother's Day.

  8. This is a beautiful reminder, Rachel! You always say things so beautifully. Happy Mother's Day, friend!

  9. rachel, thank you so much for writing is just beautiful and captures so much of what i've been feeling. i'm having a hard time being excited for tomorrow because of so many years mother's day meant a day of dread and avoiding people as i had a pity party of my own...but as i get to partake in the celebration this year, more than anything, i am just so grateful that i am my son's mother and so grateful for God's greater plan.
    thanks again, sweet friend.

  10. This is so beautifully written Rachel!! I am in tears. I love this post. Everything you said is so true. I know I will never forget the journey we had waiting for our little Oliver's picture. Nor will we forget this second phase of waiting. What I do know is that the joy I have right now knowing we have a son far out ways any of that saddness I had. I know in my heart that this is all apart of God's plan and it's all in his timing. I believe that it was apart of his plan to have me meet you and all the other amazing friends I've met along the way. I'm so happy that our paths were able to cross!

  11. This is beautiful, Rachel. Thanks for recognizing these emotions and not trivializing the pain of infertility. Once I'm a Mom I don't want to forget either. Infertility has changed me and I don't want to forget those still waiting.

  12. So beautifuly said Rachel - you always have the most perfect words.

  13. Such a beautiful post! I, too, remember those days and it is the quiet moments with my boys where I just feel so grateful and blessed for the two precious boys that God has entrusted to our family. They are such blessings and provide me with such perspective. If we only knew then what we know now.

  14. Rachel, Amazing. I feel like God gave you each word of his post.



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