Pre-Order So God Made a Mother

I think it was about the age my son turned 10 there became new boundaries: too big for cuddles, tickling or crawling into my bed anymore, and most of the time even hugs.

I mourned that time hard. I never knew when the last time was. There was no warning. It was just all the sudden we aren’t doing this anymore.

OK, I respect that, I do.

Things are becoming so different now and I am trying to keep up.

But I guess I’m still struggling to find my new place to connect.

My son, you are changing so quickly and I almost don’t even recognize the man you are becoming.

I crave connection with you and try to find some common ground. Yet at the same time, I catch myself rolling my eyes when I’m busy and you want to show me a YouTube video of something I have no clue about and it doesn’t interest me in the least bit.

I mean, I listen as best I can when you talk about all your Xbox games.

I sit idly by when you show me YouTube videos, trying to keep my mind from wandering to the 500 other things I should be doing.

I watch you create computer animations and let you try to teach me techy stuff.

You can go on and on about history and politics, leaving me to believe you are way smarter than I am already. I nod and smile and try to chime in with what I do know.

I think about how you may just be a better person than I am in multiple aspects; maybe you always have been.

RELATED: God Gave Me Sons

Since the day you came into this world, you have been unknowingly teaching me how to become a better person.

You showed me how to be a mother and brought out this nurturing side to me I never thought existed. I cringe thinking about where I’d be without you.

Between you becoming older and now having a new baby sister, we’ve really been struggling to stay close and relate to each other. I already felt the divide before your sister was born but now, we really have to fight it.

You endure a lot without ever saying much about it.

I sense that you would love to sit and talk to me for hours about all the stuff that interests you and show me all the weird things you are into, but instead, I give you a sharp tone and tell you I just wanted quiet time while the baby is napping. All of this weighs heavy on my heart.

And you don’t push. Never. That’s not you.

You go on about your business and I sit with my guilt.

You would never be loud or disrespectful to adults.

I see you.

I know your heart.

You are a tender person.

You are quiet.

You are alone a lot for a teenager.

This introverted, analytical personality of yours has distanced you from a lot of your peers. You are not interested in some things like sports that would typically bond you with other kids your age, but if all this bothers you, you definitely do not let it show.

You completely accept not being in the “in-crowd” and seem completely accepting of who you are, I marvel at that. You have a couple of really close friends and are perfectly content with that.

You are not a risk-taker and you feel best playing it safe in all situations. Sometimes all these things worry me, that you might miss out on opportunities you need to experience.

You struggle to find your place in a very small town with a limited number of classmates, where there are not a lot of options for your interests.

You are definitely wise beyond your years. Your maturity astounds me.

So far you are a much more grounded and obedient teenager than I ever was.

My heart melted the day you walked home from school later than usual and told me you wanted to stay to hold the door open for everyone leaving to get on the buses. This started a new trend for you for the rest of the school year. Leave it to you to find a way to be social and friendly while remaining in the background, like you like to do.

Or the time the neighbor stopped me and said it makes her day that you wave at her every time she drives by on your walk to school. Even though you would never speak up in a crowd and find it uncomfortable to talk to someone you don’t know, you still find an outlet for your kindness.

Then there was the time I was completely overjoyed when you got out your wallet at church to tithe without ever being asked.

Even as I write this, you are outside mowing, leaf blowing, picking up sticks, and filling up your baby sister’s kiddie pool. You said you would “just go ahead and do it all” because you know how tired your dad is when he gets home.

How did you get so nice? How did your heart get so big? What did I do to deserve you?

You wear your heart on your sleeve and this worries me, too. However, we have come such a long way from when your 2nd-grade teacher told me you would cry when you couldn’t get your homework right. You’ve always put so much pressure on yourself.

You have really come into your own, and I just love you so much. You truly have been a godsend for your dad and me. I wish showing you love, attention, and affection were as simple as it used to be. But now affection looks different, more complex, more engaging.

So, I will try my best to understand what is so great about EDM (electronic dance music) and grin and bear it, all in an effort to stay connected to you. Because you deserve it. Because I know how critically important and formative these days are, and honestly, there aren’t many left.

I have to prove to you that you matter, no matter what.

We have reached a point to where you have surpassed me, not only in algebra but also in character. It makes me wonder who is supposed to be teaching who here.

I pray you will continue to hang in there with me while we figure out how to maneuver this time in our lives. And thanks for teaching ME how to be a mom to YOU.

You may also like:

God Gave Me Sons

My Sons Are Exactly What I Never Knew I Needed

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Amy Blair

Amy adores her main gig as a stay at home mom to a very wise 15-year-old son and a super spunky 2-year old daughter. As an aspiring author, she loves to write and finds it very cathartic. She is working on her first book now! You might have seen some of her articles on the Today Parenting site, Pregnant Chicken, Filter Free Parents, and of course Her View from Home, you may have even heard her on a podcast here or there. You can expect to find her writing to be light-hearted and humorous, but also heavy and emotional. She is no stranger to writing about the hard stuff. No subject is off-limits, and she often exposes a tremendous amount of vulnerability. On her blog she hopes that sharing her struggles and experience can teach, inspire, entertain, and make others feel not alone. When she is not writing or parenting you can find her planning her next fix of concert therapy since music is her lifeline.

Yes, We Wanted a Big Family

In: Kids, Motherhood
Big family silhouette

Baby number WHAT?!?! Okay, okay, I know having FIVE children in the modern world is a bit of an anomaly, but the responses we have gotten from sharing our joyful (to us!) news has been a bit over-the-top. You see, my husband and I always dreamt of a big family, verbally expressing four to five children as our ultimate number. After having three, I must say I had to do some convincing to keep going, as my husband felt our hands were pretty full. I do agree our hands were pretty full, but I still felt our hearts could handle...

Keep Reading

How Much Longer Will I Watch Them Play?

In: Kids, Motherhood, Tween
Two boys at indoor playground, color photo

As I sit here watching my two boys running around on the bright-colored foam mats, sliding down the bright red and green slides that end up in a ball pit full of giggles, I can’t help but wonder how much longer I will enjoy this sight. They’re both growing up so fast—T-shirts with their favorite characters have been replaced by plain colors.  Curtains with Paw Patrol now invite an “Eww, cringe!” reaction. Slowly their boy bedroom decor has been updated to reflect the cool gamers they so want to be. RELATED: He’s a Boy For Just a Little While Longer No...

Keep Reading

God Gave Him Bigger Feelings

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little boy on playground, color photo

He came home from school last week and asked, “Why do I get so angry but my friends never do? Why am I not the same?” And it broke me. Because he is passionate and intelligent and kind and intuitive and beautiful. He didn’t always seem different. We never paid attention to how he would line everything up in play. And we would laugh it off as a quirk when he would organize everything dependent upon shape, size, and color. He was stubborn, sure, but so am I. And then COVID happened, and we attributed the lack of social skills...

Keep Reading

We Have a Big Family and Wouldn’t Change a Thing

In: Kids, Motherhood
Four children in front of Christmas tree, color photo

I have just had my fourth baby. A baby who wasn’t expected but very much wanted and very much loved from the moment we found out. When we told people we were expecting, the response was underwhelming. The stream of intrusive questions would then ensue:  You already have your hands full, how will you cope with four? You’ll need a bigger car! Where will they all sleep? Don’t you own a TV? You know how babies are made right? People seemed to have such a strong opinion about me having a fourth child. RELATED: We Had a Lot of Kids...

Keep Reading

As a Mom I’m Far From Perfect, But I Hope You Remember the Joy

In: Kids, Motherhood
Happy mother and daughter on the beach

Sometimes, I think about the future when you are grown and I am gone. When all that’s left of me are photographs and memories. I know what the photographs will show. I took most of them, after all. But the memories I’m less sure of. I wonder what will stick with you after all that time. How will you remember me? One day, your grandkids will ask you about me. What will you say? Will you tell them I was always distracted? Will you remember that I looked at my phone too much? Will you tell them I didn’t play...

Keep Reading

Being a Daycare Mom Can Be So Hard

In: Kids, Living, Motherhood
Woman holding boy on couch, black-and-white photo

Dear daycare mom,  I know it’s hard.  To get yourself up before them, to make lunches, to pack the bags, to get yourself ready.  To go into their rooms, where they are peacefully sleeping, and turn the lights on.  To struggle to get them breakfast, get them dressed, and get them out the door.  I know it’s hard.  To have a morning rush when all you want to do is snuggle up on the couch and ease into your day.  RELATED: When a Mom is Late To Work To feel like you are missing out on their childhood at times...

Keep Reading

The PB&J that Saved the Day

In: Kids, Motherhood
Table with three plates of PB&J sandwiches, color photo

It was one of those days.  One of those days when your pants are too tight, you wake up with a headache, and the kids’ rooms are disasters at 8 a.m. It was one of those days when I had to physically go into Target for our groceries since I didn’t have time to wait for pickup—I think that alone should sum up exactly the kind of day it was.  The kids were hangry. The toddler was, well, toddler-y. RELATED: Toddlers Are Human Too—And Sometimes They Just Need Grace Two minutes into our shopping trip, she had kicked her light-up rain...

Keep Reading

One Day He’ll Love Another Woman More than He Loves Me

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother holding baby, color photo

To Benjamin, my 16-month-old son, I am everything. I am the first person that boy looks for when he wakes up in the morning and the last person he wants before he goes to bed. If he is in a room full of people he loves and I am not there, he will search for me.  If he has a problem, mommy is the solution. I am the answer to his cries. I feel confident in saying that I am the most important person in that little boy’s little world. I love it. It is an honor and a privilege...

Keep Reading

To My Sister, Thank You For Being the Best Aunt To My Kids

In: Kids, Motherhood
Aunt with three young kids

“Do you have the kids’ basketball schedule yet?” you texted the other day. I sent back a screenshot of the calendar, and within an hour you responded telling me which game you’d be coming to. It was a simple exchange, but I was overwhelmed with gratitude for your love for my kids in that moment. It’s something I think often but don’t say nearly enough: thank you for being such an amazing aunt. Truly.  I know it’s not always convenient. You live three hours away and have a busy, full life of your own—but still, you show up for your niece and nephews...

Keep Reading

In Defense of the Stubborn Child

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little boy hanging over dock, color photo

“Lamp. Lamp. Laaaaamp,” my 2-year-old son screamed while stomping his feet. Tears were running down his face and snot was dripping dangerously close to his mouth. I put on what I hoped would be a soothing, motherly tone, “Okay, just calm down.” While trying to maintain eye contact, I slowly reached toward the tissue box. This must be what the greats like Jeff Corwin, Steve Irwin, or the Kratt brothers feel like when facing a volatile animal in the wild. The sound of a tissue being pulled from the box caused the crying to stop abruptly. His eyes flitted toward...

Keep Reading