The past couple of days with my son have been profound.
A short while ago him and I were in the kitchen- I bent over to look into his face- and I noticed something about his eyes I hadn’t quite taken note of in a long time.
I looked hard at his eyes- it was the way they were shaped- the way his pupils were positioned within his eyes- There was something quite awakening about that moment as I examined my little boy’s eyes that made me realise that I was missing out on some incredible things about this amazing young man.
Then there’s my daughter… My little girl turns a year this month- it’s startling how time truly flies when they’re this small.
I can still remember the day we drove to the hospital to deliver her.
I can clearly see her little screaming face as they showed me to her for the first time.
I can remember how I felt holding her and not wanting to put her down.
I remember it all in such detail as though it just happened- and yet it’s already been a year since her birth!
Just a year ago my baby girl was no bigger than my two hands put together- today she’s standing- trying to wobble a walk, scooting around the house in her walker, wrestling with her dad, giggling, tossing and giving her brother a hard time (often)- an entire year has already gone by!
It happens that fast.
And so the other day as I bent over looking at my boy’s eyes- and into them- I realised that there was perhaps nothing more important in my role in this life than capturing as much of my children as I possibly could.
For the longest time I’ve know that being their mother I am perhaps one of their most influential teachers. I’ve known that I am hugely responsible for the atmosphere of our home and creating an environment where they can flourish.
But even as I knew this- there were far too many times I let other things distract me.
I do have ambitions. And I have dreams. And I have so many other things that play a role in fulfilling me outside of my children. But what I’m discovering is that when my role as a mom is priority- I am so energised, so happy, so full that that fullness spills over to everything else in my life.
I’ve heard people talk about the “sacrifice” of giving up careers to be stay-at-home moms. I think it’s quite sad that the word “sacrifice” is used in this context.
Never ever ever, since I left my job to be home, have I felt I “sacrificed” my career for my children.
Not once have I missed getting into my car, driving to an office and working there.
There have been some tough days being at home but never in all my working life have I been happier than I am right now serving my family first and foremost.
In college I was among the top students in my study.
I remember once saying to my class mates that my dream was to be a housewife.
One of my guy friends was flabbergasted and blurted: “Love, what a waste that would be!”
His statement and so many others who think this reminds me of Watchman Nee. One day one of the men who’d taught him bumped into him. Nee didn’t look very successful and his former teacher was disappointed.
After all the promise Nee had had as a student the teacher felt the boy had amounted to nothing. What a waste of such intelligence! Such promise! And he minced no words in telling Nee exactly how he felt.
As the man who had once taught him walked away from Nee, the young man felt such despair and shame consume him. He had dedicated his entire life to serving God. Had he truly wasted his life?
And in that moment Nee thought of the woman with the alabaster box who took her most prized possession and poured it on Jesus.
Those that looked upon this act had called it a waste.
How could she waste such a precious, insanely expensive, perfume on Jesus!
And yet… And yet where others saw waste, Jesus saw worship and ministry that touched Him so much that this woman was the only person He commanded we always mention when we preach the gospel.
And as Nee remembered that woman he realised that what others saw as a waste of his life God saw as amazing and so worthy of the highest honour.
If what I’m doing in leaving it all to serve my children and my husband is a waste of my life- what a gorgeous waste!
I don’t think I’m missing out on life. I don’t think I gave up my career for something less than.
Instead I feel I am so honoured being blessed with a husband who makes it such a pleasure to serve. I have been blessed with two gorgeous children whose coming has given me such purpose. I feel my babies brought me back to life.
A while ago one of my friend’s daughters told me that what she really wanted to do with her life was to be a wife and mom.
I know some of her friends may find her dream to be silly. But I hope with all hope that she doesn’t let go of that dream. It’s not silly. And it’s not unambitious. I know this for sure because I have done many things in my life. I’ve had great achievements and done things so many people thought I was incapable of accomplishing.
I’ve had people I’ve never met before contact me and tell me how incredible they think I am at my work… When I was a TV anchor I even had the glitz of being asked for my autograph a few times. Those times were great. But when I look back on my life nothing I have ever done has even come slightly close to the joy of being a housewife and mom.
Stay-at-home mom. It is often looked down upon. I think because we haven’t truly unpacked the blessing that it is.
I have found it to be such a noble path. So if that’s the path you’ve decided for your life, please, please, please (please)- Never ever say you’re “Just a stay-at-home mom.” What you are doing is crucial.
Being an amazing mom is the stuff great nations are made of. Don’t ever be ashamed of it.
I know sometimes it may feel thankless but I recently learned that God honours what I do for my children and my husband. Even if they don’t thank me or even show appreciation for my efforts, Father sees everything I do and every single day He says: “Well done my good and faithful servant.” That I know for absolute sure.
I didn’t give up my career I traded it in for work with purpose.
I didn’t give up earning a living, I was given the opportunity to learn how to live in this most remarkable and most joyful way.