When I drop my kids off at school and they all pile out with bags and water bottles and lunch boxes as the line lady urges us forward (“Pull forward!!!”) I always smile and cheerily say something like, “Have a great day!” or “See you after school!” or “Love you guys!”

But that’s not all I really want to say. That’s not what I want to press into them as they leave me for seven hours of the day to friends and not friends and teachers and schoolwork and pressure and LIFE.

I want to say, “I know it’s hard. And long. I know you struggle. It doesn’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to be the most popular. You don’t have to be top of the class. You don’t always have to pretend. Please just be kind and do your best and be YOU and know that is ALWAYS enough.”

I want to wrap my arms around each one until he struggles and press my love into each one so he knows—KNOWS—how precious and loved and adored and “perfect” he is to me.

But clinging to them in carline every morning isn’t a possibility and I realize they will just look at me like I’m crazy and say, “Moooom. Stoooop.” So instead, as they step from the car, I give each a kiss on the forehead with my generic goodbyes—then as I drive away, I pray.

God, soften their hearts. God, fill all the holes. God, lead them and guide them and hold them every single moment of every single day of their lives.

Because the truth is I can provide two loving parents and a safe, clean-ish home and healthy food and an avenue for exercise and rules and consequences and expectations and medical care and a great education, but try as I might, life happens. There will be pain and loss and failure and sadness. There will be cracks and holes and broken pieces.

Because I am human.

And they are human.

I cannot make it perfect. I cannot prevent pain. Oh, how I wish sometimes I could!

But every day, I will pray:

God, fill all the holes. Because in YOU they can be whole.


This post originally appeared on Ordinary on Purpose, by Mikala Albertson


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Mikala Albertson

Mikala is a wife, family practice doctor turned mostly stay-at-home mom to five kids, and writer. She is the author of Ordinary On Purpose: Surrendering Perfect and Discovering Beauty Amid the Rubble available wherever books are sold. Mikala writes to give you permission to release your grip on all the should-dos and have-tos and comparisons and “I’m not measuring up”s and just be free to live your life. THIS life, however imperfect. In this body with these relationships in this house at this job with these parents and these circumstances. Your ONE precious, beautiful life! Join her on Facebook and Instagram.