I’m 41. I have never been one to get all emotional about turning a certain age. 40 didn’t phase me at all. It was actually 39 that I remember being hard for some weird reason. So 41 is just 41.
41 years ago I was born. Around 36 years ago my parents became believers. 34 years ago I accepted Jesus as my Savior. 23 years ago I graduated from high school. 20 years ago I spent the summer studying art in Mexico and later that year I met John. 19 years ago John and I got married. 18 years ago I had a miscarriage. 17 years ago I had my first child. 11 years ago I was a mother of three children. 5 years ago I was a public school art teacher. 3 years ago we moved to Kansas City. 2 years ago we adopted our first child. 4 months ago we adopted 2 more.
I am so thankful this year that the Father loves me as I am and is so patient with my journey to His heart. I’m so grateful that He rejoices in the process and enjoys me without the expectations of perfection that I sometimes heap upon myself.
I’m grateful for a husband who loves me well and cares about my heart. I’m grateful that he is a partner with me in marriage and parenting.
I am so blessed by the gift of motherhood. I had a career, one I was very good at and one I really enjoyed. But hands down nothing compares to the joy of pouring into my kids lives and seeing the fruit of my labor. I am not Wonder Woman or super mom, and I am no June Cleaver.
There are days I am too exhausted to do my job well, there are days I cry under the pressure of it, there are days I wonder if I really have what it takes, there are days I am impatient and unkind, there are days I want to run away and hide. But let me tell you this. There are MORE days that I am filled with overwhelming joy at the very thought that my job is to love and shepherd my children into their callings. There are MORE days when I laugh my way through the craziness and marvel at the unique qualities of each of my children. There are so MANY MORE days when being a mom is a wild adventure that I wouldn’t trade for the world.
Being a mom at 41 has provided me the benefit of not freaking out so horribly when my son eats dirt, when my daughter does a face plant at the playground and comes up with so much blood I can’t tell what’s wounded, or when my toddlers use sticks to stir toilet paper in the potty and fling it all over the bathroom.
Being 41 has allowed me to realize that though I function better in a clean organized house, a clean organized house does nothing to prove my value as a wife and mom. Clean houses just get messy, but happy, well-loved children become happy, loving adults one day.
Being 41 has reminded me that I need to take better care of myself and not neglect my own heart, mind, or body at the expense of caring for those I love the most. I want to be around for them a long time. I want to have a heart that is alive on the inside. I want to be able to keep up with them when I’m 51.
I am grateful today for 41 years and so blessed at all that God has done in my life. I am so blessed by the precious ones He has surrounded me with. I’m grateful for true friends and an amazing family.
I wonder what I will be marveling at on my 42nd birthday?