Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"My Hear Rejoices in the Lord"....

Awhile back, I wrote a post about how some days, it was so easy to forget that our children are a blessing from the Lord.  That for every woman with an  "unwanted" pregnancy, there is another woman desperately crying out to God for just one.

I told you about another very dear friend, and fellow blogger, April, who was one of those women who wanted nothing more than to have a child of her own.  Yet, it never seemed to happen.  The Lord really laid her on my heart, and I began to pray each day for her.  She reminded me of Hannah, in the Bible, who desperately wanted a child of her own.  She went to the temple and prayed.  She was so passionate in her prayer that the priest thought she was drunk.  But, God looked down on her, and blessed her with a child.  

"My heart rejoices in the Lord; my horn is exalted in the Lord.
I smile at my enemies, because I rejoice in Your salvation.
No one is holy like the Lord, for there is none besides You,
Nor is there any rock like our God." (I Samuel 2:1-2)

That was Hannah's prayer of thanksgiving.  I am SO happy to be able to report that my sweet friend April can pray that prayer now! April and her husband have just found out that they are expecting!  I was almost as happy as the day I found out I was pregnant with my own children.

Now begins the fun part!  I was reading her blog this evening, and it reminded me of all the advice first time moms get.  Some of it is great, other times its terrifying.  Sometimes you think its sound, and other times it leaves you scratching your head thinking "well that kid is going to need therapy".  

I am certainly no pro at the mom thing.  I mean, I am going to be able to save my daughter a ton of money on a shrink my just admitting that I have screwed up many times, and it probably is all my fault.  But, my children are healthy.  They are beautiful, smart, kind, loving, and so far, at least one of them has my smart-ass wit and determination.  I'm certain the other does as well, but he still can't speak English enough to know for sure.  Tonight, after I read April's blog, I watched The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.  Quite possibly the best movie ever.  It got me to wondering what advice I would give my friend.  So, here is my top 10 list of things I think she should know!

1.  Don't wish your pregnancy away!  You only have 9 months to feel the life inside you kicking.  Nine months to have the best excuse for being fat and eating as much as you want.  I enjoyed every moment of being pregnant, and honestly miss it.

2.  Yes, it hurts.  Yes, there are drugs.  Yes, women have been doing it forever.

3.  Don't read too many parenting books!  I decided when I was pregnant with Flower that, other than books on my pregnancy, I would not read parenting books.  I still haven't (and as far as I can tell, my children are relatively normal).  Here is why: there are a million and one books telling us how we should parent our children, which approaches we should take, etc.  But once that little one starts developing their own personality, all bets are off!  I don't want to kill my child's spirit before I even figure out what it is!  Trust your instincts, and most importantly, trust God.

4.  Sleep while you can.

5.  As my Granny says "You can't spoil them with love."  This goes hand in hand with number 3.  As long as you love your children, and do the very best you can, it will all be OK.  Hug them every chance you get!

6.  Start wearing gaudy necklaces made with beads and yarn now.  You will get many in the future.

7.  You will get incredibly hormonal.  You will cry.  At everything.  I once cried because I walked outside and thought how beautiful a day it was.  Barb Wire Man laughed. I hit him.  

8.  Some women will tell you not to view pregnancy as a handicap, i.e., don't be babied.  Some say if you can do it when you aren't pregnant, you can do it when you are.  Me?  I say be handicapped.  I mean, how many times in your life are you going to be able to convince your husband to paint your toenails because you can't see your feet?  Or convince him to cook supper because your back hurts?  Or lift the laundry basket because its "too heavy?!

9.  Don't let yourself go after you have kids.  Its not hard to get into the mommy-rut, which is when you haven't had a shower in 3 days, you might have baby barf (or was it smushed peas?) in your hair, you don't even know what shade of makeup you wear anymore, and you only own sweats.  Somedays will just be that way.  But, every now and then, make sure you are dressed nice, with your hair and makeup done when your hubby come home from work....he might be surprised!  Before it was Chris, April and Soybean, it was just Chris and April.  We tend to think our children need to come before out spouses, but thats just not it.  Never, ever, put your love aside, and forget to nurture it.  (I learned this when I back talked my momma once.  My daddy, who I thought was always on my side, looked at me and said "Let me tell you something, I love your momma before I ever loved you, and I will not have you disrespecting her."  Ouch!)

10.  YOU WILL FAIL AT TIMES!  It is inevitable, but kids are bouncy.  They love you no matter what and are always quick to forgive.  

And, because I miscounted and still have one more....

11.  As hard as it is, remember that Our Heavenly Father loves our kids more than we do.  He protects them better than we do, and provides for them better than we do.  And when we don't know what to do, He does.  

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