(Baby Judah and Mama)
My womb has sheltered and grown five amazing people. People who curl up in my lap, grab my cheeks in their hands and demand my focus and love.
Gone are the days of nursing schedules, infant seats and baby food. My nights are not disturbed by the pitiless wailing of someone demanding their midnight snack.
And I'm left feeling a bit... bereft and unsure. Almost like, "Wait. That's it? That part's over?"
Yes, it is.
Does every mama go through this? With my children getting older (and yes, the littlest is only three) and gaining independence, what does that mean?
In many respects, my job is getting more intense, more one on one, more like an energy vacuum.
They don't need me as much and yet in every way, they need me now more than ever.
It's called the paradox of motherhood, y'all.
With them getting to be older, it starts to slowly (and I do mean slowly here, folks) free me up for other things. I have less of a restricted schedule and our lives are more "on the go".
This is a season of starting to ponder what happens when the majority of the raising and schooling is done and maybe, just maybe, starting to prepare for that.
So what does that mean on a practical level?
I think that it means a lot of prayer and soul-searching. A lot.
It also means looking for small ways to move towards that goal or dream. It could be so small as checking out books from the library on something that interests you. It really can't get any simpler than that, I know.
Here's another thought... How can you serve? In what ways can you use your talents and gifts to serve others? Thankfully, the Lord created us all as multi-faceted creations, so we have lots of strengths and interests.
Seeing as this is a new season without little babies, my hubby and I have started looking for ways for our family to serve together. My elder daughter and I packaged food for Feed My Starving Children. We all volunteered for a work day at church right before Easter and landscaped and cleaned and decorated. He's singing more on the worship team and we're finding new areas to volunteer in.
We love having our kids by our sides as we're working to show our kids how to serve. It can be as simple or elaborate as you want it to be. We're all learning the joy of caring for others together.
But I think the most important thing is figuring out what your identity is in Christ. Who does He say you are, because, after all that's what matters. Take the time to search it out. Really dig into the Word, establish what He says about you and then you'll have a solid foundation to build upon.
Maybe this time is for you to start bringing the old dreams out of moth balls and airing them out a bit. It may not be time to start acting on them, but sometimes, it's just enough to know they're still there waiting in the wings for their turn.