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I read somewhere the other day that when a child is born, a parent is too. In my first few months being a mother, I’m learning just how odd that sentiment is. In an instant, I became someone new. Not only that, but I became part of a group I didn’t realize existed. That sounds wrong. Of course, mothers existed. But this community of mothers? I had no idea.

It took us a long time to get where we are today. Throughout our journey with infertility, I knew in my heart I was meant to be a mother. I knew that raising a child was stitched right into my being. I didn’t know, though, what a home I’d find in being one of millions of moms around the world just doing their best to love their children well.

I look back on our journey of infertility with so much tenderness. I remember feeling so disappointed that those who’d overcome their own infertility stories no longer seemed to relate to my own. I wanted to be seen and known by those who fought to become parents like we were trying to do. I wanted their hope realized to somehow help me carry my own hope delayed.

RELATED: Dear Friend Facing Infertility, I Love You

Now that we’re on the other side and get to hold our baby girl every day, I get it. There is community in infertility. There really is. And it’s beautiful in its own right. But this community in motherhood? It’s just different. I’m so sad for all the years I didn’t know it. And so heartbroken for those longing to be here on their own winding road to parenthood. I didn’t know what I was missing.

Say what you will about mom guilt and shame and comparison. Those things sneak in from time to time. But what I have found much more often is love, support, and compassion.

I’ve found an understanding smile, tired eyes that appreciate the exhaustion in my own, a helping hand, and a village of moms just waiting with an encouraging word. The random acts of kindness have brought tears to my eyes. My courage has been honored when I’ve asked for help. An abundance of patience has been waiting as I’ve learn the hard lessons.

This community is one born of experience. It’s a community of those who have been there, with uncertainty, resilience, and appreciation for every opportunity. It’s a community you just don’t know until you do.

RELATED: Does it Really Take a Village?

And to you still longing to become a mother? I see you too. My heart aches for the broken path you’re walking. You don’t know what you’re missing.

And also, it will be okay. The pain you’re feeling won’t last forever. It also won’t disappear. It will become a part of who you are as a mother. A valuable piece you bring to the community. A unique point of strength and an important perspective. The work you are doing is worth it. The battle you’re fighting is not in vain. I cannot wait for the day when your prayers are answered and you are born into this community, too.

In the meantime, I will do my best to stand in the gap. I will do my best to help you continue to feel seen and to feel known by someone who’s been there. I will do my best to remind you of the hope I know is hard to hold onto. I will do my best to hold my place in both the communities of infertility and motherhood with tenderness, compassion, and love.

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So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Becky Kraenow

I think words matter, and I love to use them. As a wife and mom, I tend to work out my faith and life's challenges through writing, often talking in circles with myself until I see whatever it may be God is calling me into. I like tea, good music, and rainy days, and I'm honored to share my experiences with you on this platform.

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