Pre-Order So God Made a Mother

The day was coming to an end. As usual, as the sky got darker outside, her oldest would be heard saying, “It’s getting dark out, isn’t is Mommy?” She was full of observations, bright and quick-witted like her father. “Yes honey. The day is ending soon. It won’t be long until snack time and then bed time.”  “It’s getting dark out Mommy.” “Yes, dear, it is.”

Being a mother of two girls wasn’t always what she had thought it would be. Actually, she often stopped and thought to herself about how ironic it was that she was even a mother at all. Growing up, she swore she would never have any children. Didn’t want to be tied down. Grand ideas of traveling all over the world, doing whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted. Her childhood wasn’t what she thought it should be, and she didn’t see how having her own children was in the stars for her. As the youngest of six kids, she’d been an aunt since she was six, and around kids her whole life. There was no great appeal.

Then when her siblings close to her own age started having their own children, for the first time, she felt that urge she had heard so much about- the urge to have her own baby to hold and rock rather than someone else’s. The deal with her husband was, “If we have one, then we have to have two,” and he wanted them close together. So, without a real thought about how it would work, they had one, and then when she was nine months old, they got pregnant with number two. It was hard at first, but for the most part, the really difficult days seemed to be over…

Her daughters try her patience with the usual toddler antics: tantrums, not listening, whining- the whole gamut of childhood tactics. There are many times when she feels that she’s really going to lose it. Snack time consisting of resistance to eating- eating being one of the worst activities she encounters on a daily basis. Meals full of trying to get the oldest to chew and swallow the food that has been in her mouth for the past 15-20 minutes. Bribing, removing all forms of entertainment, running a timer are all common mealtime strategies for ensuring the oldest has some source of nutrition in that quickly growing body.

“Are you happy Mommy?” the oldest will often ask. All day, at any moment this question can pop out of her mouth–while playing outside, while driving in the car, while changing the youngest’s diaper or amidst the many other daily activities, “Are you happy Mommy?” It stops her in her tracks most every time the young girl asks this question. There are times she tells her oldest that no, she isn’t happy because someone isn’t eating her food, or someone isn’t listening and doing as she has been told, but more often than not, she reverts the question back to her oldest daughter, “Are you happy? If you are happy, then I am too.”

Yes, being a mom was full of those unexpected moments. Those moments when your nerves are fried, you’re tired and doing your best, but just feeling like you’re accomplishing nothing. Somehow the two little beauties that you created are getting the best of you, and it all feels like it’s just too much. She craves that moment when she can get them into bed and have a second to breathe before tackling some other task that couldn’t be done while they were awake, and so the bedtime rituals begin, just trying to keep them going and getting them safely tucked away and asleep.

After potty and PJs and goodnight kisses for Daddy, the two girls get their goodnights from Mommy. The youngest is put in her crib first, waiting her turn, while Mommy tucks in the oldest. Organizing the buddies on her bed, and one last cuddle while she hums, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”- the oldest lays her head in that crook upon Mom’s shoulder and snuggles in. Kisses and hugs- good night wishes, and a final, “I love you” before closing the door to head to the youngest’s room. Never failing the oldest calls out, “Turn up the heat,” as she snuggles into her blanket with Giraffey, her beloved giraffe stuffed animal.

Smiling, Mom goes to her youngest girl’s room, gives her a last sip before bedtime and sits down in the recliner to rock for a little. She whispers into her ear, “I love you” and the soft whisper of a child just learning to speak, “Love you too” caresses her ear as her youngest reaches up to pull her closer for a hug.

“Are you happy Mommy?” she hears echo in her head as her eyes fill with tears… and she knows… there is nothing in the world that could make her happier.

Photo credit: Slidely via Visualhunt / CC BY

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Patricia Wood

An educator since 2004, I now find myself as a stay at home mom of my two toddler daughters. Happily married, I spend my time chasing my girls and recently my dreams of becoming a writer all while trying to be a stellar wife and mom. There are successes and failures, but much happiness. If you like what you read you can also check out my blog at

Dear Daughter, It’s Okay If You Hate Me Right Now

In: Kids, Motherhood, Teen, Tween
Teen girl looking up at mother

Dear daughter: I’ve heard it from you a thousand times when you don’t get your way. You yell it when your force of will doesn’t bend mine, thinking it will convince me to give in. But I’m here to tell you once and for all: I don’t care if you hate me right now. Last night you hated me because I made you take a bath before bed. This morning, it was because I made you wear pants. I’m the worst mom ever because I told you to eat a vegetable, and the whole day is ruined because I won’t...

Keep Reading

You’re Learning Life by Watching Me

In: Kids, Motherhood
Child touching mother's face as they lie on a bed

Every morning my daughter and I go outside for some fresh air. She feeds her chickens and plays and explores and walks around with her dog while I follow her around and have a cup of coffee.  This morning, my girl grabbed one of her coffee cups from her toy kitchen and brought it outside with her while she walked with her dog and pretended to take sips out of it.  Guys. I stood there watching her with her toy coffee cup, walking around with her animals, and I cried giant baby tears.  RELATED: I Wasn’t Counting On You Growing...

Keep Reading

Sometimes Love Means Slowing Down

In: Friendship, Kids
Two boys on bicycles riding to park, shown from behind

Think of something faster than a 7-year-old boy on a two-wheel bike. Maybe a race car at the drop of the checkered flag? Perhaps a rocket ship blasting into space? Or how quickly a toddler mom books it out of the house after being told she can have a hands-free hour ALONE in Target. Yes, all of these things are seriously speedy, but I have still never seen anything quite as quick as a boy on a bike on a sunny day with endless open track ahead of him. Until today. Today, my 6-year-old son wanted to ride bikes with...

Keep Reading

3 Ways to Help Your Firstborn Embrace Becoming a Big Brother

In: Baby, Kids, Motherhood, Toddler
Pregnant woman holding toddler son, color photo

My oldest son turned four right after his first brother was born. Four years of alone time with his parents. Four years of extra mommy time during the week. Four years of having toys to himself, extra attention from family members, and more. I didn’t plan a four-year age gap; it took our family a lot longer and a lot more help than we expected to have our second son, but age gaps aren’t everything. When my second son was finally on the way, I heard a lot of opinions about how our oldest son would feel once he finally...

Keep Reading

I Am a Wrestling Mom

In: Kids, Motherhood
Three young boys with wrestling medals, color photo

As the sun is rising on a frigid winter morning, a brave and determined group of athletes are weighing in at a high school gym. They are physically and mentally preparing for a long day spent at a tournament where they will spend only minutes wrestling, despite the hours they sit and wait all day. Their sport uses offense, defense, and mental strength unlike any other sport. My sons and nephew are wrestlers. They are part of a special team of athletes who work together but compete as individuals.           Their youth team is run by all volunteer coaches with...

Keep Reading

Dear Busy Sports Mom: It’s Worth It

In: Kids, Motherhood, Tween
Mom watching soccer game, photo from behind

My daughter stands on the front porch every morning and waves goodbye to me as I pull out of the driveway to go to work.  She is 11, and recently eye-rolling, long sighs, and tears have become more commonplace in our daily interactions. But, there is also this: “Bye! Have a good day!” she calls to me in the quiet of early morning, neighbors not yet awake in their still dark houses. “You are AMAZING! You got this!” she continues in her little adult voice, sounding more like a soccer mom than a fifth grader.   Her hair is still a...

Keep Reading

Goodbye to the Baby Hangers

In: Kids, Motherhood
Shirt hanging from small hanger, color photo

You bought them when you first found out you were pregnant. It may have been one of the first items, actually, to hold all of the precious new clothes. The smallest ones in your household. Do you remember that first newborn onesie you bought? It was one of your favorites. You couldn’t fathom you would soon hold something so small that would fit into that onesie. You washed all of the new clothing in preparation and hung them up in your baby’s closet. You know the item. A miniature version of the ones in your closet. Baby hangers. “Do we...

Keep Reading

Take the Trip, You Won’t Regret It

In: Kids, Living, Motherhood

Two years ago, in the middle of a snowy, windy, Colorado March, my husband and I made the spontaneous decision to road trip to Arizona with our three very young kids.  Even though I was excited, the nerves were so very real. Over the next couple of weeks, I literally lost sleep worrying about the logistics of our trip. My late-night mindless scrolling was replaced by searches like “traveling with toddlers” and “keeping kids entertained on road trips”. We already had our hands full chasing kids at home in a familiar setting. Were we crazy to think we could just...

Keep Reading

They’ll Remember the Love Most of All

In: Kids, Motherhood
Woman with kids from above, pregnant mother with kids hands on belly

You lie in bed at the end of a long day, the events of the day flashing back through your mind. You do this a lot—recap your day as a mama. How did you do? Did you maintain your patience? Did you play enough? Did you limit screen time? Did you yell less today than you did yesterday? You saw a really neat toddler activity in the group you’re a part of on Facebook . . . you should have done that with the kids. They would have loved it. There wasn’t enough time though, and you didn’t have all...

Keep Reading

He’s Slowly Walking Away with Footprints As Big As Mine

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood, Tween
Teen boy walking along beach shore

The true measure of a mother’s love is her willingness to wake up before the sun on vacation. On a recent trip to the shore, my youngest son begged to walk the beach at dawn to look for shells. So, I set my alarm, tumbled out of a warm, king-sized bed with extra squishy pillows, glared at my dead-to-the-world husband, and gently woke my 11-year-old. Without so much as a drop of coffee, we headed out into the morning, the sun still below the ocean horizon. With each step, I shed my zombie-like state and took in the quiet, salt-kissed...

Keep Reading