Today I am featuring my first guest post in my little corner of the internet. One of my favorite bloggers, new author of a book every mom should read, and mother of three, Lisa-Jo Baker is sharing her words. She is like a long lost friend I never met. Her book has inspired me to embrace those everyday, tired, and often heart wrenching moments of motherhood and see the grace of God in them. I am beyond honored to feature her post on my website today.
As we approach Mother’s Day, let’s decide together that we aren’t going to be disappointed over unmet expectations. Instead, let’s decide what we can do for each other. Lisa-Jo has just the idea.
(and make sure you check out the giveaway I’m featuring at the bottom of this post!)
Mothering can be a lonely gig.
For all we spend it surrounded by many tiny humans. And their big, gaping demands. And their tugging, tireless hands.
We can tend to retreat, to hole up, to recede from life and each other because, let’s face it, just managing our own homes is more than enough crazy for a lifetime. This might work for a season, a day, a week or two. But there is a danger of withering beneath the weight of the every day, 24 hours set on repeat over and over again with no off button if we keep at it alone.
There is something you can give. Something you can receive.
From your sisters. From the women you might never actually meet. From the neighbor who lives at the end of your quiet street, your mother-in-law, your church friend, school friend, PTA parent, baseball-bleachers-sitting sister.
There is this one thing we can do for one another. This one thing that is everything. And costs nothing.
Holding up the arms.
Rubbing the tired shoulders, folding the laundry, sharing the recipes, reminding each other about free donut days and birthdays and showering grace when we’re late to the preschool pick up.
Not comparing our kids. Celebrating the victories. Weeping the pain. Delivering the casseroles. Sharing more than just, “I’m fine.” Rocking the colicky babies, offering the girls nights out, teaching the best teething gels, powders, rings.
Admitting the temper tantrums.
Sending the cards, loaning the good boots, complimenting the jeans. Sharing the best books, driving the car pool, ignoring the squabbling kids, making time for the catching up. Coming when she calls when her man’s out of town. Showing up with the Starbucks and sticky buns. Telling her, she can. Especially on the days when she’s still wearing her pajamas. Telling her to be kind to herself, and that comfy clothes are always the right choice.
Not comparing houses or laundry piles or kids’ behavior.
Cheering for each others’ dreams, kids, work, art, new hair cut.
Crying alongside. Holding on. Hoping. Passing the tissues. Buying the chocolate. Holding the hands. Opening arms to the grief. Patiently walking the valleys, flash light packed, stop watch left at home.
Believing the best, giving the benefit of the doubt, calling. Complimenting.
Spending time in each others’ kitchens, laundry rooms, living rooms, cars. Meeting up for breakfasts, sending notes just because. Praying. Cracking knees to the mat and praying for her story, her life, her rabid fear of parenting.
Sharing the mess ups, the upside downs, the glimpses into your chaos, the dog days of motherhood when you want your money back. Not cleaning up before she comes over. Being OK with being seen just as you really are.
Welcoming her into your real life. So she can exhale.
And you can be encouraged.
This. This we can do.
This guest post comes with love from Lisa-Jo Baker to our community in celebration of Mother’s Day. If you haven’t already – treat yourself, your mom, your sister, your BFF or your grandma to a copy of her new book, Surprised by Motherhood: Everything I Never Expected About Being a Mom.
No matter what stage you’re in when it comes to motherhood, we promise it will encourage. And remind you that you are braver than you think. (unfortunately due to shipping, you have to be located in the US to be entered).
Moms, we can do this for each other, right? Make the commitment today to encourage another mom. Now, for the fun part! As a Mother’s Day gift to tired moms everywhere, I am giving away a copy of Lisa-Jo’s book, Surprised by Motherhood. And, because Lisa-Jo is so generous, also enter to win one of three signed bookplates. Check them out below! How. cool. is. that? To enter, simply post a comment below and I will announce the winners this Friday, May 9th. Now, show Lisa-Jo some love and tell other moms you know about this amazing book!