adoption option: christianity was made for mothers

i was planning today to write more about our paperwork and how things are progressing with the adoption process, but i find  myself feverishly typing this post instead. i have been so emotional lately regarding our adoption, and i want to document all of my feelings because…it helps me sort through it.

i know i’m not pregnant. i know that. however, lately, i find myself, for all intents and purposes, feeling emotionally pregnant. i find myself thinking about the baby constantly, and thus thinking of myself as a mother constantly too. everything, and i mean everything makes me tear up.. a song on the radio, blog posts of adoptive mothers, birth mom stories, those sarah mclachlan pet commercials, any song with minor chord progression……it kinda sucks, truthfully! it’s like i feel a rush of excitement, nervousness, anxiety, impatience, and sheer terror all at the same time and my only response lately is to cry about it! 

quite honestly though, i think i have been having a lot of fear. it’s very very real now that we could have a baby soon, and i am all of a sudden having an overwhelming feeling of “what if i can’t do this…” i’m sure all mothers feel this way at some point..(if not, lie to me, people. i’m fragile..)  but it’s really scary to feel this way! here are a list of my current fears, in no particular order:

*what if they cry and i don’t know what to do

*what if they are sick i don’t realize it

*what if they choke and i can’t help them

*what if i forget to buckle them in the car seat

*what if they don’t like me

*what if they think i’m a bad mom

*what if i can’t handle this

i have lots of mommy friends and we have been having lots of conversations lately about the nearness of me and motherhood.  i find myself clinging to every word they speak. searching each conversation for bits of knowledge and advice. anything i can cling to and take into mommyhood with me. i think because we have waited so long (like, almost a decade!) to have kids, we have been mentally and emotionally preparing for this day for a long time. it’s given us a loooooong time to think about what kinds of parents we will be and want to be, and we are very aware of how hard some days can be for parents. the advice has been great, but its interesting: the overwhelming theme from every parent we have spoken to has been 1) you won’t do everything right and 2) you will never be enough for your child

and this is why i am fairly confident that Christianity was made for mothers (and fathers, i suppose :) ).  i will never be everything my child needs. i can’t be. the same way paul can’t be everything i need, or my parents, my career, or even my children. the only thing that can absolutely fill the “everything” hole, is my faith. and because of this, i find myself clinging to Jesus with both fists.

the crazy thing is, i already have this desperation for my child to feel this way too. to have a desire to hold so tightly to their faith and never let go. i want to make sure i teach them and train them and show them how to love Jesus. however,  i understand better now why my parents took us to church each sunday. why they modeled a Godly life, and why they made Jesus so important. yes, they wanted us to have a deep faith, but i realize now their passion was also an overflow of their necessity.  i want to foster a deep faith out of love and thankfulness, of course, but also, i am realizing even now, there is no better, and really no other, option as a parent, than to cling to Jesus. and i am so grateful for that.

so there it is. i clearly don’t know everything on anything so any sage advice and/or wisdom is always appreciated.


  1. says

    O, girl. Oooph. I need to let your words marinate. This was so good.

    To the specific questions, sometimes you just have to live through them to realize that they are survivable, you know? Letting a child go (presumingly) weeks with an ear infection… it sucks (or so I’m told ;) ) but then the sting of it is over and life goes on. Sure motherhood is hard, but like birth and pregnancy, women have been doing it for thousands of years!


    • says

      i love that: you just have to live through them to realize that they are survivable. so SO true. paul tells me i am doing to parenthood what i did about all my tests in college; assuming total failure but secretly knowing i will pass. fingers crossed. and THANK YOU for being an awesome sounding board. :)

  2. Sissie says

    Sissie, I love you!! I’m SO excited for you to be a mommy. You are going to be the BEST mom ever!! And on the days you feel like you’re not, you can call me and we can swap stories about how we let our kids watch 12 hours of TV and eat Cheetos out of the bag because we needed some “mommy time”. ;)

    • says

      oh sissie! i love YOU! and yes, except don’t judge me if it’s 14 hours of TV and a sleeve of Oreos too. oh wait…that will just be me…..

  3. Paul Berg says

    You are going to be an absolutely incredible mom. I have ZERO doubts. Zero. I can’t wait to parent our kids right along side you :) I’ll be looking over your shoulder the whole time!!!

  4. says

    Well, let me see here: 1) It takes all new moms a bit to learn what their new babies cries mean. We figured it out and you will, too. 2) I’ve had two children to have pneumonia and I had no idea. It happens to the best of us…they are still alive. 3) I’ve never had them choke and me not realize it because I was always in their face. I have a feeling that you will be too. Their faces are cute and hard not to just stare at. 4) I did that once. I think his snow suit was so big and puffy that he was effectively wedged into the seat and arrived safe and sound. 5) Of course there will be a day when they don’t like you. This will happen about age three and they will scream “I HATE YOU!” right after you have told them “no” to whatever it is they want to do/play/eat. Then they will run to you and give you a big wet, snotty kiss. 6) Even if you are a bad mom (which you won’t be), your children will always think that you are the best mom ever. Well, until they are teenagers. 7) There is a moment (or shall I say moments) in every mother’s life when she thinks she can’t handle it. It usually has something to do with sleep deprivation. These are the times when you must take a little break and collect your thoughts. Whether you leave the child home with dad and go the mall/library/grocery store/Starbucks, or put the baby in the play yard with toys while you sit down with a box of Thin Mints or you get in a 10 minute devotional while he or she naps. No matter what, you MUST make time for yourself. Trust me, even when things are tough, just one sweet smile from your little one makes it all worth it. :-)

    • says

      Ugh Lisa, you are amazing. Thank you for this. Also know that you have sky rocketed to the top of my “help me!!!” list of people i will inevitably run to at some point in the future :) i feel so blessed to get such amazing advice and insight and love from my ‘village’. also: i may or may not be printing this out and taping it to my bathroom mirror. :)

  5. Madde Mernin says

    Hey Leah! I totally hear where you’re coming from. Parenthood is soooo many things. And preparing for it is soooo overwhelming. I’m pretty sure I have donee every single thing on your “fear list.” But my child and I are both alive…miracles do happen ;). And you will survive all of them too.

    I think one of the most wrenching things about parenthood is that your heart is suddenly opened to this great, deep love that is just amazing. You have the capacity to love in a way you have never felt before. But it is also the most painful kind if love to feel. Because you know at any moment, if anything ever happened to your precious baby, all that love you feel would be lost. And it’s that kind of love that would be unbearable. Your heart is completely on your sleeve everyday. You can’t control it anymore. Instead it lives, toddling around inside your little one.

    That sounds depressing, but really it is so beautiful. You totally experience the way Christ loves.

    There are so many days when I’m just enthralled with our daughter. Just want to drink in every one of her breaths and thank God in an outpouring for such a blessing. And then there are days when I cry the whole way to target because I’m grocery shopping yet again with her on my hip and would give anything for 5 minutes alone. But the Lord is there to rescue us in those times when we are udderly human, when our flesh takes over. He is always there to save us from ourselves, to save us from the earthly realm of parenthood. I hope that encourages you! Because all these new emotions and feelings you have are just the beginning of what daily being a parent feels like, I think. God helps you manage them because he gave them to you so you can be the best parent you can be.

    So excited for you, Leah! You guys will be in our prayers as you start out on this fun adventure :)

    • says

      Oh my gosh madde this totally made me cry! Add it to the list! :) this was so beautiful, thank you so much for your kind words and encouragement. We are so excited to experience this new kind of love and I know I will find myself re-reading these words from you a lot during the process! Thank you for your love and prayers. It means so much to us.

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