Little girls often have a way of dreaming what their perfect adult life will look like. For me, I remember dreaming that I would be married by 23 with 2 kids by 30, perfectly spaced out 3 years apart. As I matured in age and reached high school graduation, my dream stayed the same but included more details, such as what my husband would look like and how my kids would behave. By the time I was pregnant (before we found out I was carrying multiples), I would dream of a perfectly well behaved, Christ-like child who always responded to me with "yes ma'am" or "no ma'am" and of course obeyed my every command. I envisioned how things would be for me as a mommy; how I would never do what so-and-so did with their child, and how I would hold everything together seamlessly without much struggle because I am a planner and always have been. And of course everything would go according to my plan.
That, my friends, is called delusion! How silly I was to think that I knew everything before "everything" happened. I remember praying daily that God would bestow parenthood upon Kris and I. After all, it took us over a year to conceive. So you can imagine the joy we experienced when we first saw a positive pregnancy test, which was confirmed by the doctor. I thanked God graciously and promised to raise this beautiful child to the best of my ability. I still, however, thought that I was the one in control. Until the day of our ultrasound and we found out that God has a serious sense of humor. He had given us TWO babies. "How funny", I thought, "are you punishing me? You know I cannot handle two babies at one time. This is not how my plan was to go. Remember...I wanted two children, spaced out by 3 years, not 3 minutes."
I can't imagine what my thoughts must have felt like to our Heavenly Father. He must have been so disappointed in me for feeling this way about His master plan for my life. I can only relate to the extent of when one of my children disappoints me by disobeying. I have to believe that God was much more disappointed in me than I have ever been with my children.
When the twins reached the age of 1, I thought that I had developed a pretty good plan and that everything was going accordingly. They were following my instructions and schedule perfectly and I just knew that I was certainly not going to have to face the "terrible two's" if I kept up the hard work. Oh silly me! While my children are well behaved, for the most part, they are still normal children who get into things they aren't supposed to, fight me on the little things, and of course throw temper tantrums when they don't get what they want. I, however, have been under the lie that I am to blame for this behavior and that somehow I am an unfit mother because my children aren't following my perfectly laid out plan that I established before they were born.
It has taken me months of personal frustration and unnecessary comparison of myself and children to my friends and their children, to finally realize that I am NOT in control of this life. I have failed to ask the Lord how He feels about me and my children. Or how He would instruct me over the hurdles of the day. I have failed to step back and laugh at the unpredictability of each day with twins. I have seriously failed in experiencing pure joy through my hardships. I have allowed a lie of a "perfect life" and "perfect children" and "perfect situations" to overshadow my abundant blessings.
What I realize today, is that my dreams have not lined up with God's plan for my life. And that is OK! It is ok for me to be blessed with 3 children under the age of two, rather than having 2 children "perfectly" spaced out in age. It's ok for me to change a dirty diaper on the couch, rather than on the changing table (of which I previously told myself that I would never do). It is certainly ok for my children to be upset and act like 1 1/2 year olds, because they are children who don't comprehend things the way I do. And is is ok for me to live a life that doesn't resemble the norm of what my friends are doing with their children.
Friends, if my lessons can do anything for you, I pray that they would encourage you to stop placing judgement on yourself as a mother, and to not place any comparison on your life to other mothers. Sure so-and-so's kids always have the cutest bows and matching outfits and take perfect pictures. While it may seem that your kids are unruly, always messy and can never take that sweet picture that you had hoped to capture. I assure you that these things do not matter. What matters is that you are happy, your kids are happy and your family is happy. All other things aside....pure joy begins with the Father. Knowing that He has a master plan for my life is all I need to remember and to let my dreams of the perfect life die.