Friday, May 18, 2018

Growing into Mama

My story into Motherhood has been one of the most refining and defining things of my life. I reflect on my life and find myself nearly speechless, at what a gift it is. A life built because 4 ½ years ago, because I followed a call towards foster care. Upon seeing the need I said, “yes.” Today I realize just how much I underestimated what that “yes” would mean for my life. Motherhood is uprooting.

All I ever wanted to be was a Mom, at 27 my life plan wasn’t shaping up like I had planned, so I begin to shift my perspective and look through a different lens. What did being a Mother actually mean? Motherhood is diverse.

When I started foster care, I actually didn’t intend to build a family. I intended to open my home to some of our most vulnerable little souls. What time has done with that “yes,” while my family is still ever changing. My world has changed, colliding with these little people, whether for a moment or forever. Each one of them changing me. Motherhood is refining.

Mother’s Day, a day just 4 years ago made my heart ache (all of you who are aching on this day, we see you). This year I laid in bed, as I was told, waiting for my breakfast, I was overwhelmed by this beautiful life that has unfolded before me. My oldest organized and worked out with my mom a plan. My mom would come over early to wrangle babies, so I could sleep in, while my oldest made coffee and pancakes. Motherhood is beautiful.

On Mother’s Day, I met up with Bio- Mom to exchange Little One, we had gotten her Friday and Saturday nights so I met up with Mom so she could have her for Mother’s Day. She got out of her car, with a bouquet of flowers, along with a gift and card. At the sight of that, my heart broke. Motherhood is uniting.

When I could have been the enemy of her happiness she chose to let me have this day dedicating it to me The gift was a mug, the kind a child would give to a mother. I realized in these past 4 years I wasn’t just loving and raising her children but her as well. I reflect back on all the texts she has sent me about her success, victories, celebrations and hard days. The mug reads, “you are the kind of mom every person wishes they had.” This woman I judged, questioned and rolled my eyes at. This woman who I didn’t care to know four years ago, has radically changed my life. Our relationship started off tense, territorial, and hard. She accused me of everything and I thought nothing of her. Then one day, I had all her kids, she had messed up and I won. For 8 months I raised her 4 children as my own. The ruling came and termination occurred and the older 3 were set to be mine, forever. The weight of that hit me hard and changed my heart, she was not the enemy her addiction was. The day I adopted the older 3 kiddos I got the call that Little One had to go back, and we were crushed, in the midst of celebrating it all, we said goodbye to our baby. During the following months of grieving, Bio Mom sent letters, asking to see the kids, I saved them never responding, we needed time to heal and grow as a family of 4. A year went by and I reached out and her and I began building a new relationship. A relationship born out of the reality that she had what I wanted and I had what she wanted. We found ourselves loving the same 4 kids and we decided to build our story there. Motherhood is humbling.

Days before his recent adoption, Baby Boy, squealed out a “Mama.” That one word takes my breath away, I pause, not wanting to move, just wanting to soak it in. Finally, how true that statement is. It’s almost like I don’t believe it is true, like I am living a dream. The title of Mama is hands down the greatest hat I have gotten to wear, being their Mama, don’t even get me started on how I feel about that reality. Motherhood is amazing.

Loving them is the riskiest thing I have ever done. Having borrowed babies, with Bio-parents is painful and at times exhausting. Having the honor of raising these Kindness Warriors is a gift. Loving them well for a moment or a lifetime, is changing me. The lessons I have learned these past 4 years are changing me, allowing me the opportunity to live an audacious life. Motherhood makes me brave.

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