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It’s been almost three years now, but I can still remember how your 8-pound body felt in my arms. Night after night as we tried to sleep, I remember your sounds, your movements, and your tiny hands. I gave it my all but still felt I fell short.

You see sweet little one, you may have been brand new to this world, but so was I. The day you were born, a mother was born too. Things didn’t always go according to plan. It’s hard when you try your best, but you just can’t get there. So many new things to learnfeeding, sleeping, and being together. Trying sometimes with success, but sometimes with failure. Starting over and learning again.

No one seems to talk about these times. No one really prepares you for them. I imagine it’s because they don’t want to scare you, but these first few months with your baby are magical in their own way. A place between awake and asleep. Days and nights that merge together. A level of exhaustion you never knew about. Trying again and again. The world moving on while you are both still.

As you sing, you rock, you hope, you pray, you thank God for this precious gift, but doubt yourself. Constantly wondering if you are deserving enough. Are you trying hard enough?

Then as if time were slipping through your fingers, that baby begins to grow. The memories of the first days fade as you experience all of the new firsts. You want to hold on to the memories, but they’re so hard to remember. The tummy time, counting diapers and feeds, first foods, the naps, the sitting, the standing, the wobbling, the walking, the running, the talking, preschool, family, friends, and the first time “mama” becomes “mommy.” You think back to those times, just the two of you, alone in a dark room, rocking for hours and hours, both crying and wondering can we do this?

As I look back, I think to myself, is this how God made me a mother? Does He need someone to care for these babies who is willing to turn to him, reach down in their soul, and give everything they have? For me, it was a journey of becoming more selfless, of putting my own needs aside, of breaking down and being built back up, of forgetting what I thought I knew and learning again.

Would I change it? Never in a million years. Because now I know how God feels about each one of us. Now I’m a mother. Now I know the meaning of true love and purpose in life. Now I know what I was missing. What an honor it is to have this sweet baby boy, the one I’ve wished for for so long, and I’m so thankful I was chosen. I can’t help but look back on myself and be proud even though I sometimes fall short. This journey has truly changed me, and I am forever grateful. I will be forever learning, growing, and loving this boy who made me a mom.

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So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Holly Branham

Stay-at-home mom to a wonderful 2-year-old boy, living in Lexington, South Carolina. I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, writing, and figuring out this thing called motherhood.

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