Dear Mom of One,
Please don't compare yourself to the Mom of Many. I don't want you to miss out on the incredible job you're doing with your precious little one just because you think maybe you're not doing "enough" when you compare yourself to the Mom of Many.
I know it's easy to look at the Mom of Many and say "I don't know how you do it!" but here are some things I would love to share with you.
I Don't Do It All
While I do try to keep the house generally picked up, it is not 100% neat and tidy. On any given day there WILL be dishes in the sink, dust on the piano and laundry waiting to be washed, dried, folded or put away. I will never be caught up on everything and I'm okay with that. There will come a day when I'm not doing 10 loads of laundry per week and the dishes probably won't be sitting on the counter for days at a time but those days are long off. For now, I'm loving my life with my husband and all of our little people.
I Get Help
We are a family and we do the best we can to live like one. That means that while we love to play together, we also work together. All of our children start having chores from the time they are about 3. The younger ones don't do much, but one of us will come alongside them and show them how to do things. Even my 21 month old loves to help Momma take the clothes out of the dryer and put them in the living room. It's not much and it takes a little extra time on my part, but he is learning to be a helper in our family. Teaching our kids to help around the house is so important. Not only does this help prepare them for their own home some day, but it also lightens my load.
My husband is also a blessing because if I have had a particularly hectic week he will help with the dishes and laundry. He has lightened my load more times than I can count and I am incredibly grateful for him!
I Didn't Get All of These Kids at Once
Each of our children entered our home one at a time. For me, that means I had at least two years to adjust to each new child before another one blessed our home. If the Lord chooses to give you more children, more than likely you'll get them one at time and with each child you'll have the grace and strength you need to complete the tasks before you.
They Won't Always Be in Diapers
Sometimes when you look at the Mom of Many you might forget that your one child won't always be as needy as he is right now. With each passing month he is going to grow and mature more and more. He won't always need you to change his diaper, brush his teeth or get him a snack. The days go by so quickly I can't even believe it so just let your heart enjoy these precious moments with your child.
In Some Ways, It's Actually Easier to Have Many Children
Crazy, but true! When I had one child I think in some ways it was actually harder because I was the only one available to keep an eye on him and I was his only playmate. Now that I have four children ranging in ages between 9 1/2 years and 21 months, someone always has someone to play with and there is always an older child to keep an eye on the toddler if I need a few minutes to finish up dinner or jump in the shower.
The Lord Gives Me the Strength I Need
This is most important because I could not do this without Him. My most repeated prayer is "Lord, please help me" and He really does. Who other than God can I check my worries, exhaustion and concerns at the door in exchange for His grace, strength and peace? No one.
While I don't feel like this every day, there have been dramatic moments of motherhood when I feel like I could echo this sentiment from 2 Corinthians 1:8-10: "[I] was overwhelmed, and thought I would never live through it. In fact, [I] expected to die. But as a result, we learned not to rely on ourselves, but on God who can raise the dead. And he did deliver us...and we are confident that He will continue to deliver us."
Did I really think that motherhood was going to kill me?
Not really. (Well, maybe after some serious sleep deprived nights, but mostly, I'm exaggerating.) ;) My point is this though: There is nothing like Motherhood to teach me that I can't do it all, be it all or fix it all. I need Christ and His strength. It took motherhood to make me realize just how weak I am but it also showed me that when I rely on Christ His strength can actually work better when I realize how much I need Him. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
God is faithful and in more ways than I even realize. Even our littlest troubles are not hid from Him and neither are yours. Go to Him!
Sweet Mom of One, ENJOY this time with your one. You are blessed beyond measure and please don't ever compare yourself to anyone. You are the most amazing person in your little one's life.
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