So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

It’s been hard to place my feelings lately. Until today, I didn’t know what to call it, this odd mix of rage and grief and hope and nostalgia and disappointment swirling around inside my head. But as I sat in my car this morning and Faith Hill’s “Where Are You Christmas” came on the radio and tears started streaming down my cheeks, I finally understood.

I’ve been mourning.

Mourning what the holidays were supposed to look like this year. Mourning the traditions I’ve been looking forward to and the experiences I was planning to share with the people I love.

Mourning the incredible brokenness of our country, and its people. Mourning how divided we are and how far apart we have grown, both literally and figuratively.

Mourning the ease and convenience with which we used to be able to come together. The control and certainty over our own plans and schedules that we took for granted.

Mourning the predictable and safe and consistent parts of our lives that have been flipped completely upside down.

Where are you Christmas
Why can’t I find you
Why have you gone away
Where is the laughter
You used to bring me
Why can’t I hear music play

My world is changing
I’m rearranging
Does that mean Christmas changes too

I’m mourning the loss of the person I was just one short year ago. She feels like a stranger to me now. I’m mourning her confidence and assuredness. I’m mourning her faith and unwavering conviction that things always work out for the best.

Where are you Christmas
Do you remember
The one you used to know
I’m not the same one
See what the time’s done
Is that why you have let me go

We have lost so much this year—it has seemed insurmountable at times. It’s so difficult not to feel cheated, robbed.

It takes everything in me to keep my heart from hardening to stone and bitter resentment from spilling over.

But every once in a while, often when I least expect it, I’m reminded that the most important things can’t be taken away from us, no matter how the world feels like it’s crumbling around us or people continue to let us down.

Christmas is here
Everywhere, oh
Christmas is here
If you care, oh

If there is love in your heart and your mind
You will feel like Christmas all the time

There she is. Right when I need her. Stubborn and relentless and incorrigible and downright painful, but I’ll be damned if she doesn’t always show up, even if it’s at the most inconvenient time, even if I happen to be gulping back big, ugly, racking sobs in the parking lot of the local library—

Hope.

Oh, I feel you Christmas
I know I’ve found you
You never fade away, oh
The joy of Christmas
Stays here inside us
Fills each and every heart with love

So if you need a moment to ugly-cry in your car this season while you blast Faith Hill and mourn everything that 2020 has taken from you, and mourn the holidays you had envisioned for your family, and mourn the expectations and desires and visions you have only just started to let go . . .

I hope you take it.

But then I hope you listen to that faint, gentle voice in the back of your mind—the one that’s gotten smaller and softer, but refused to leave you completely alone this whole year.

The one that finds a way to be heard, even at the moments you aren’t prepared to welcome it.

The voice that tells you what matters most will always be the love we hold in our hearts, and the love we pour into the people who matter.

And nothing—not even 2020—can take that away.

PS: Dear Holiday Season, We Need You This Year More Than Ever

Originally published on the author’s Facebook page.

Emily Solberg

Emily Solberg is a soldier, military spouse, mom of two, and fierce advocate of women supporting women. The goal of her writing is to help others feel less alone in their parenting journeys, and she isn’t afraid to share the hard parts of her own. You can find more from her over on Facebook and Instagram at Shower Arguments with Emily Solberg.

I Know My Friends Aren’t Bothered by My Messy House, but I Am

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Sad woman by laundry pile

My house screams at me. It screams to clear off the kitchen counters, to put away the clean clothes, to organize the shoe collection in our entry, to gather up the scattered toys, to sweep the crumbs up, to place the throw pillows back on the couch, to clean off the table—you get the idea. Everything in my sight speaks volumes to the state it does not want to be in, for the chaos it is imposing.  Keeping home is a labor of love and never of balance for me. Everything that is cleaned, made, or organized will always get...

Keep Reading

A Medical Diagnosis Challenges a Marriage

In: Cancer, Living, Marriage
Bald woman holding clippers over husband's head, color photo

It is no secret now that Albert Pujols and his wife have announced their divorce shortly after she had surgery to remove a brain tumor. As a breast cancer survivor, this news hit me in a special way. As I was reading through an article from Today, there was a quote that hit me hard, “But a marriage falling apart is far more common when the wife is the patient, researchers have found. A woman is six times more likely to be separated or divorced soon after a diagnosis of cancer or multiple sclerosis than if a man in the relationship is...

Keep Reading

You Are So Much More than the Doubts in Your Head

In: Living, Motherhood
Little girl looking out window, color photo

Keep pushing. Push through every doubt the enemy instills in your mind.  Push through the depression. Push through the worrisome moments. Push through that anxiety that won’t let you win.  You’ve got to keep going. Keep moving forward.  You are a great mother. You are a great wife. You are a great employee and an even better friend.  RELATED: Struggling With Mental Health Makes You a Bad Mom—And Other Lies I’ve Believed Don’t get stuck in the same spot that depression has led you and those thoughts that say you aren’t good enough or worthy enough.  You are.  God says...

Keep Reading

I Will Live For You

In: Living, Motherhood
Mother and child silhouette

“I would die for my child, ”a well-known, often said sacrificial statement. I didn’t really know how my fierce love for my child would manifest until the first time she was extremely upset, and I didn’t know why.  Readers, I would have cut off a finger to console my baby.  I would die to protect her.  Both are strong, love-filled sentiments. And both, God willing, are unnecessary.  But there’s a daunting task that is absolutely necessary. At times it needs to be a conscious decision. Sometimes it’ll require taking care of yourself so you can better care for your child....

Keep Reading

Don’t Write Off How Far You’ve Come

In: Living
Woman smiling

Tonight when the demons in my head want to take over, I’m reminding myself that I am amazing, and I have accomplished things I dreamt about for years. I graduated from college. I have a B.A. in psychology. Other people had that. Not me. But now I do. I’m getting my Master’s degree in social work. I am a published writer. Yes, my brain and other people are tearing me down and screaming at me that I can’t do anything right. But the evidence? The evidence is that I have survived 16 years of special needs parenting. And that is...

Keep Reading

Dear Girl, Give Jesus Your Mess

In: Faith, Living
Woman holding Bible, color photo

Oh, dear girl, Give Jesus the mess. Your mess. The mess you think is too much or too big or too unbearable. The depths of the mess. The very worst of the mess. Lay it at His feet. He knew you long before the mess existed. Nobody knows your mess like Jesus. I assure you—this will not catch Him by surprise. Even when you do not understand, even when it is most difficult, even when you have your head buried in your hands. Praise Him, for God wastes nothing.  Even when it feels like opposition is coming at you from...

Keep Reading

Friends Can Be a Sanctuary

In: Friendship, Grief
Group of friends hugging

A sanctuary is defined as anywhere people go for peaceful tranquility or introspection. My friends became my sanctuary when my husband, Frank, died. They became my refuge and my safe place. Friendship is one of the most wonderful gifts in this world. It is beautiful, comforting, ever-changing, and, for me, a fixed point.  My friends seemed to know exactly what I needed and when I needed it. Their love and constant support got me through the worst of times and gave me the courage and confidence I needed to move forward.  I could never give an adequate thank you to...

Keep Reading

Childhood Trauma Made Me Crave the Simple Life I’m Living Now

In: Living, Motherhood
Family walking down road

My own childhood was not a happy one.  My earliest memory was of blowing out a birthday candle (I was maybe three) and of my wish being that my parents would get a divorce, that my dad would disappear forever. The happiest days of my childhood were 72 hours spent in a shelter for battered women outside of DC with my mom and two younger brothers because for the first time in my 9-year-old life, I felt free from the many constraints of home life—short-lived as I knew this freedom would be, knowing he would always find a way back...

Keep Reading

I Don’t Dress “Like a Mom” and I’m Not Sorry

In: Living, Motherhood
Mother in tank top and shorts with three children, color photo

I’ve always had a rather unique style.  I’m not afraid to dress loudly and stand out.  I’ll be the only girl wearing heels in a stadium full of flats.  I’ll wear sequins and glitter in my 30s.  I’ll wear vintage, current trends, and things that have possibly never been fashionable. If I feel confident and comfortable in what I’m wearing, that’s really all I care about.  I’ve been complimented on my outfit choices plenty of times.  RELATED: I’ll Always Be Too Much For Some People I’ve also been negatively judged—many times I know about and probably more times when I’m blissfully...

Keep Reading

What If the Woman Who Seems to Have It All Actually Admires You?

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood

I’ve known her for a long time, and as long as I’ve known her, she’s always been beautiful. Beautiful on the inside and even more beautiful on the outside. Her makeup is perfectly done, her hair with not a strand out of place. And her clothes? Chic. She is well put together, always in vogue. While I have recycled the same clothes for the past five years, she is on point with the latest trends. She can even rock a pair of sweatpants. Her pictures on Facebook and Instagram posts confirm this as well. (She also has a successful career,...

Keep Reading

 5 Secrets to Connect with Your Kids

FREE EMAIL BONUS

Proven techniques to build REAL connections