Have you ever had God show you a little more of yourself than you wanted to see? Or maybe a lot more?
Today’s post is a real heart-to-heart you guys. I’m imagining another mom sitting across the table from me – ideally at a coffee shop but more realistically at my house while my kids are napping haha. We’re sharing some of our struggles with each other, and right now it’s my turn.
So, lately, my kids have really been bringing out my bad side. And honestly, it’s come as a bit of a shock.
After my first was born, I was in motherhood bliss. I couldn’t imagine ever being upset at this sweet little person, this tiny part of me who held such a huge piece of my heart.
I felt similarly when my second was born. Life was crazier for sure – Caleb my first was now two years old – but still, I felt pretty good about my mom-ing for the most part. I thought, somewhat smugly I’m afraid, that I was not one of those moms who get mad at their kids. I spoke quietly and calmly when Caleb acted up. I never raised my voice.
Well . . . then my two year old turned three.
I started noticing a change in myself – impatience, frustration, and dare I say it, anger, started creeping in. Instead of the calm and cool mom of before, there have now been many times where I’ve found myself feeling angry at this little person who I love so intensely. It seems that parenting really has a way of bringing out my bad side!
How is it that I could always keep my cool with the multiple children I nannied back in the day, but now my own children are sometimes hearing harsh, impatient words come out of my mouth? Ugh, I hate even writing that you guys, but it’s such a struggle some days!
What is this?! Who am I??
Don’t you hate it when you learn more about yourself and don’t like what you see?
I’m sure we’ve all heard the analogy of the teacup. When you bump a full teacup, something is going to spill out. My children haven’t suddenly turned me into a worse person. All of that was already inside of me; it’s just that now my “teacup” is getting bumped and spilled a whole lot more.
What spills out shows what’s really inside of me – and I’m not so sure I like it.
I would feel a whole lot better about myself if my kids would just behave and stop upsetting my “teacup”. Ha! But you know what? That’s really the goodness of God. God is good to introduce me to new circumstances that reveal things to me about myself that I really didn’t want to know.
Let’s be honest, it stinks to find out how much we need help, doesn’t it? It’s humbling, that’s for sure. But that’s a good thing because God never intended for us to do the job of parenting by ourselves. (Good thing too because we’d fail for sure!) He intends for us to rely on Him for every step, admitting our failures and our need for Him all along the way.
Parenting is hard, not because of my children, but because of me. But thank God for allowing this process of parenting to “bring out my bad side” so that He can work on me and grow me as I confess my failings.
I have a lot more thoughts on this topic but I’m going to leave them for another blog post so I can get this one finished up and posted. In the mean time, go listen to this podcast episode from Risen Motherhood. It’s on this same topic and it’s both convicting and encouraging – so basically it’s super good and you need to check it out! 😉
I’d also love to hear from you! What has God been showing you about yourself lately? Let’s chat in the comments!