I remember telling my little not-quite-three Kaden that if ever he woke up in the middle of the night and saw Miss Rachel sleeping on our living room couch, that he had nothing to worry about....Mommy and Daddy were just going to the hospital to get him his new little baby. And I remember him looking up at me with those sweet, trusting eyes....I remember his, "Okay, Mama"...and I remember that night when I did leave him, and when Miss Rachel did come to sleep on my couch.
I remember how my heart hurt just a little bit knowing how much my "baby's" world was about to be rocked in just a few short hours. And it hurt just a little bit at the change that I knew was about to take place.
And I remember the crazy whirlwind of signing papers and of moving into our new house just a few short years later. I remember waking up our very first morning here, with my two big boys jumping into bed with us as we all looked out our windows and saw trees for the first time in a long time because now we lived in the country... I remember kissing those soft, sweet cheeks of my two-year old Jesse and knowing that today was the day.... And I remember my heart squeezing just a little bit tighter because I knew that now it was this baby's turn to give up his spot as the youngest...and it was time for him to grow up just a tiny bit faster that day...
And I remember how it made my heart hurt just a little bit at the change that I knew was about to take place again.
And tonight, when I snuck down the stairs to check on my three sweet gifts - all tucked in their beds for the night with tissues and vaporizers, and blankets and puppies.... When my not-quite-asleep Ransom looked up at me from his bed and whispered: "Mama, will you snuggie with me for just a minute?"..... When I scooped him up, and while we snuggled together on the bed....and while I drank deep of his sweet little boy smell...with his baby sister kicking hard between us...
My heart hurts just a little bit at the change that I know is about to take place in just a few short weeks again.
This shifting of my babies becoming the older siblings.
This growing fast and growing up...
These new roles that take place as another comes to take their place as the youngest.
It kind of slays me.
And the changes that come when new babies take on roles of actual family members...and when Mama gets spread a little thinner, but her heart gets grown a whole lot larger...and her soul, it loves on a whole level deeper...
This perpetual birthing of myself into deeper levels of motherhood...
It's a little bit painful.
And a lot a bit scary.
It's a vulnerable place to be...and a humbling journey to walk.
There are days when I think: "I was made for this."
And there are days when I wonder what in the world were we thinking in going for number four?
Because change is hard for me. Growth hurts. Stretching is painful.
Any kind of change - always tends to throw me for a bit of a loop until I am able to wrap my brain around what all of the "new" is going to look like...and until I know that I'm going to be able to handle it. And that whole fear of the unknown has never really been my favorite...
But, isn't that really the whole of motherhood?
Journey...one step at a step...new stages and stepping into new realms in which we've never been?
I had never been a Mama before Kaden. We learned together.
And I had surely never been a Mama to two...let alone three -- and three boys at that! And now a little girl? Well, that's just crazy. Ten years ago, I would have laughed - really, really hard - if someone were to tell me that I was going to have four kids someday. I didn't even like kids back then. In fact, they kind of grossed me out and really made me nervous. But that's the journey of life. We never really know where it's going to take us...
And that's a good thing, I guess.
Not a single one of us has a bit of a guarantee for tomorrow. We have no idea what the future holds.
But, we know Who holds the future, right?
And that's comfort enough.
And just as my two biggest babies previous moved up into their rightful roles as "big brothers" when the necessary time came - I know this one will, as well. And I know this Mama's heart will grow just a little bit larger. And even though she will get spread a little thinner...the grace given will be just enough greater. And the Mama will grow up just a little bit more.
She will learn to trust a little bit better.
She will remember to hold a little more loosely.
She will embrace the gifts...and the grace needed both for herself and her Loves...
And she will trust the One who gave her those gifts in the very first place -- to show her how to be the Mama that she needs to be for four....
And that little bit of heart-hurt that this Mama feels at the thoughts of our family changing?
That bittersweet, painful, squeeze-the-heart pain?
Well, I'm sure Mama's all the world over are familiar with that sort of Love...
And I know that it is just barely the beginning of the kinds of letting-go heart hurt that is to come.
So, today I shall savor.
And today I will trust.