One of the biggest things I’ve had to learn since becoming a mother was knowing why I do what I do.
There are so many schools of thought out there. Couple that with a mother’s desire to do the very best for her child and you are facing a very daunting task.
I was so overwhelmed! I am the oldest of four and my family foster cared infants for about 10 years. I thought for certain all of that combined experience would have helped me in my motherhood journey. I also that thought becoming a mother after being an bonus mom for five years better prepared me for motherhood. Neither of those experiences hurt but it sure didn’t provide the security I thought it would have for all of the new things I experienced in motherhood. I always had someone coming behind me to make sure I did right. (Not that I set out to make mistakes or didn’t take my responsibilities as a sister or an bonus mom seriously but I did always have someone checking up on me regardless of what I did.)
I knew the mechanics of motherhood. I knew how to bathe an infant, change a diaper, and soothe crying (which came much easier since I was the mother this time) but it took me a lot longer to be comfortable in my own skin. I knew how I wanted to mother her. I knew I wanted to stay at home. I knew I wanted to nurse her for at least a year. I knew I wanted to make her baby food. I knew I wanted to teach her sign language. I didn’t know how to react to people who didn’t agree or understand why I was doing these things with Jazmine.
I got the ugly face from women when I was still nursing my Jaz after she started eating baby food. I got a look of confusion from people when the saw that I wasn’t feeding Jazmine jarred baby food. I got the stank face from people when they saw that I was teaching Jazmine to sign when she couldn’t even talk.
That was all very scary for me. I only wanted to do what was best for Jazmine. I listened to many trains of thought to see which ones settled within me; which ones I believed and could live by. I remember getting so frustrated and just praying to God asking Him to help me do right by Jazmine. I was begging Him to let me know if I was doing something that was not the best thing for her. It was then when He whispered that I was not to do right by Jazmine. I was to do right by Him and Jazmine would be taken care off. (What a load off !)
I refocused on Christ. I made sure everything I did or didn’t do was in service to Him. I checked my motives to make sure that there was no negative or sinful root as the cause for my actions. (I still continue to check my motives. Haughtiness in motherhood can sneak up on you if you are not careful!)
Regarding mothering Jazmine, I am resolved that if what I am doing is not a sin against the Lord, follows His commandments and His principles, and won’t kill her, than I’m okay with it.