Mom it out

MOM IT OUT Monday: The Other Mom

I’ll never give birth to a child.

I have seen and done more in my life than I could have ever dreamed imaginable.  I’ve been to places and experienced stories that are the stuff of fairy tales.  I could list a dozen dreams birthed in my heart that have already come true and God has granted me wishes I didn’t even know I had.  Miracles.  I’ve seen miracles.

I have swam with dolphins, been to the top of the Empire State Building, driven down Sunset Blvd, while watching the sun set.  I’ve sipped wine front row while swooning to Ray Lamontagne, hiked to a glorious view in Mexico, kissed in the rain in Times Square, spent a day sailing with my grandma (her bucket list), sat on the steps of the Supreme Court, been proposed to at a Dallas Cowboys game,  I was given life after a cancer death sentence.

In just the last week, I was given the opportunity to write a real-live column for a local magazine on Wednesday, got legal guardianship of the most beautiful 16yr old on Thursday, and graduated with my master’s degree on Saturday.  And next week, thanks to a lot of hard work from my husband and the generous gift of his boss, we will escape this freezing weather with an all-expense-paid trip to Miami beach!  And, God-willing – I just may finally find myself rocking beautiful babies in Africa next month.  It’s a lot.  Life God has been beyond GOOD to me. Like RIDICULOUS, OUTRAGEOUS, you can’t make this stuff UP kind of GOOD!

But one thing ain’t ever going down.   I will never… never ever… experience the miracle of growing life inside my womb for 9 months.  I will never give birth to a child.

A long time ago, before Jacey was born, while I was still crying out with a barren womb and broken heart to God for a child – a lady gave me this verse:

“Sing, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband,” says the LORD.  Isaiah 54:1

That lady told me that despite not being able to give birth, God said for her to tell me that I will have many, many children.  I used to think that meant all the kids I had in Sunday School and discipleship groups, and all the girls on my dance team, and all the kids I had at Camp Fusion.  And they were many and they were beautiful, and they were more than enough.  But, that wasn’t the end of God’s promise for me.

First, came the miracle of Jacey.  Then years later, my African princess, Miss J.  Then a year later, the glorious Jocelyn.  And another year later, my husband brought to my heart with him another beautiful daughter, Callie, and my first son, Skylar the Great.

Adoptive mom.

Foster mom.

Guardian mom.

Stepmom.

I hate all those words.  They’re just labels that society needs in order to understand stuff they need to categorize.  But, to me, they’re all just my children.  All precious gifts from God that have overtaken my heart and my life with their presence.  They are all amazing.  All beautiful.  And they all have one thing in common – they all had birth moms long before me.

And I’m grateful for their moms.

And I’m grateful to be the other mom.  It’s not always easy, tough on the heart sometimes.  But, I wouldn’t change it for the world.  Being the other mom is, hands down, still the best gig I could have ever asked for.

 

Last Thursday was probably the most overwhelming day I’ve had in years.  By the end of it, I was so overwhelmed I could hardly breathe, my mind was mush, and my heart was spent.   We started out the morning at court and came home with a signed legal document that declared Jocelyn was no longer a foster child of DHS custody, but our precious daughter to keep forever.  That, in and of itself, was a long awaited day that had all of us on flying over cloud 9.

Later that afternoon, I got a call from our worker about a call we had made to her weeks ago – to discuss an adoptable teenager that is in desperate need of a family.  No idea where that is going to end up, but J (Jocelyn) who knows firsthand the despair of living in a shelter, has come to us with a desire to open up her big room to share with another girl that is where she once was.  And I have had my heart set on another teenager for over a year now.  The Littles do life together in such a way that just blows my mind.  It’s like built-in best friends.  I would love for J to have with a sister what The Littles have with each other.

Still Thursday, later that night, I returned a message to a precious young lady who is expecting and in hopes that we would adopt her baby.

A. BABY.

I cannot even describe what it does to my heart to think of being a mother to a newborn child again.  It is hard not to go baby crazy with swirling thoughts of the momma moments that could lie ahead, but I have done my best to contain myself and lock down my emotions with prayer and seeking God’s will for our family.  This could be a gift for Chris and I to share that is straight heaven-sent.  And our family, we could be all the bigger, better and more beautiful for it.  And, OMG the wittle roly poly legs would give me LIFE, I tell you!!! *breeeeathe…

Ok, so on the real talk side, there’s so much to think about… there’s room? Check, got it.  So much financial cost on such short notice?  Uh, God will have to do a miracle there – nothin’ new.  Child care?  Well, I can’t even start working until Feb. or so – but the whole POINT of that phat degree was to be home more.

And what about the gazillion kids we already have?  Well, sure enough, as we discussed this with each of our children, we were met with wide eyes, a few squeals & jigs, and resounding joy for the possibility of a baby Johnson.  All of them pretty much said the same thing, “BRING. THAT. BABY.”

And, of course, Skylar added, “It better be a boy.”

Can you blame him?

So here we are… on the brink of who knows what.  It could all come to a halt and for a million different reasons, the door could slam shut.  And you know what, that’s okay. I never want anything that’s not got God’s hand alllllllll over it.

And let’s be real, I need another child like I need a new pair of shoes.

I don’t.

But, I would take 100 more.

I pretty much love children, all shapes, sizes, colors, and genders.  But – I’m especially fond of those that have no place to call home and no people to call family.

And ultimately, if you’re called to be a mom – it’s just that.  BE A MOM.  When you get picky and choosy about what that calling looks like, you can end up real disappointed with your plans not going the way you envisioned.  That was me laying on that hospital bed years ago with a crying doctor over me telling me about how I could never have kids. I was devastated.  My dream of becoming a mom was shattered.  My vision for how life was supposed to play out was crushed.  MY PLAN was destroyed!

AND… THANK GOD!!!

Psssshhhh, I had NO IDEA what God had in store.  HAVE YOU SEEN ALL THE BEAUTIFUL CHITLENS I’M SURROUNDED WITH???  That was not my plan! I would have sold myself way short had things turned out the way I wanted.

The best thing we can do with this crazy calling of being a MOM, is LET GO of OUR WAY, and give in to God.  HE IS the greatest parent there ever was, we can learn a lot from him.

So, with all the faith I can muster in His perfect provision and timing, here’s to more of my plans falling apart, and more of God’s will coming together.  Day by day, moment by precious moment, that’s the best way to MOM IT OUT!

 

“Sing, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband,” says the LORD.  Isaiah 54:1

Hmmmm, I was just thinking… “Isaiah” has a nice ring to it… 😉

 

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4 thoughts on “MOM IT OUT Monday: The Other Mom

  1. ❤❤❤❤ best entry to date! I’m crying over here! Jacey was just the beginning of God’s answers to your prayers. Love your big beautiful family!

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