“Are you trying for a girl?” They ask this question under the assumption we will try for a third child and will be disappointed if we don’t finally get our girl. And by “they,” I mean almost everyone we encounter these days.
What if, medically, we can’t have another? And what if we are content with the two boys we’ve been blessed with? In a world where having one of each means your family is complete, it’s easy to feel like a failure if you’ve only been given one child or children of one gender. Or no children at all.
What am I saying to God if I decide to ignore His voice in the decision to grow our family or simply steward what we have? Is my worth found in the number or gender of my babies? Will ballet shoes and tutus give me more worth in the world and in The Church?
I’d hate for my boys to grow up knowing all I wanted was a girl. I’d hate for them to think their four blue eyes were not enough for me.
No, I’m not trying for a girl. I’m trying to raise two boys in hopes they will become two great men–men who love God and love people and do their best to incorporate both commitments into everything they do. I’m trying to use the years of them under my roof to teach them how to love each other and love themselves. I’m trying to make the most of every moment of their attention I get.
I’d love to have a daughter, sure, but my days do not hinge on whether or not I get to decorate a pink room or paint tiny nails. I’ll be just fine yelling loudly at baseball games and dressing my babies in blue.
Because this life, this gift of motherhood, is not about what it looks like to everyone else or even how it makes me feel. My best-laid plans are nothing compared to whatever it is God has set aside for me.
“For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly” (Psalm 84:11, ESV). God is not holding out on me by giving me only boys. And He is not holding out on you if he has given you four daughters either. He works all things together for good when we trust and follow Him (Romans 8:28 paraphrase), so we don’t have to stress and worry that we are missing out or missing the mark when it comes to the good gifts of God.
Living our lives trying to make our own desires come to fruition means we are making ourselves god of our own stories. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want or need that much power over my life.
I want the Author of creation to write out every detail of my walk on earth, including who my children are and what they will become. Letting Him do that takes the pressure off me and puts the peace on me.
What if we decided to believe we are right where we are supposed to be with exactly who needs us? And what if we went even further and decided that the people we interact with are also right where God wants them? I believe it would change everything.
Next time you see a mama with her babies–two boys, one girl, or one on the way–you don’t have to ask her if she’s trying for another gender or trying for one more because she’s likely just trying to put one foot in front of the other and steward the gifts she has with everything she’s got.