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Being a mom was not something that I ever really thought about when I was younger.  If you had asked me, I would have vocally informed you that I did NOT want children.  I couldn't really see the point of it.  That sounds odd saying it from this side of things, but it's how I felt.

While at college, I met Chris.  Chris had hopes to have a family some day.  Oil, meet water.  Thankfully for me, Chris came to the conclusion that marriage was a commitment to your partner, and was not a deal guaranteeing children.  In our marriage counceling, this was the one sticking point.  So we agreed that the topic would not be discussed until our 5th anniversary, at which point I would come to the table and openly consider it.

I worked on my career.  I was promoted.  I was working on a Master's degree.  Things seemed great to me, I never thought about kids, and Chris never brought it up.   The part of the picture I had completely missed was that God is the giver of life, not me.  And he gave.  And I was livid.  I felt that this was a betrayal of my wishes, a rejection of my explicitly stated plan which did not include space for or a desire for children.  I struggled for many months with this new reality that had been forced on me.  I had a devoted husband, loving family, and caring friends who walked beside me, and at times dragged me, through this process.  It was beyond humbling and it broke some pieces of my spirit that shouldn't have been there in the first place.  I had finally acknowledged the absolute sovereignty of God.  I'm not sure any other experience could have brought me to the place where I could grow into this truth.

In December of 2006, Elijah was born.  I'm not quite sure how to write about this experience.  I was terrified of the labor and delivery.  But I was supported through it, and my first blessing, Eli, was born.  I was immediately bonded to him, immediately so in love with him that I knew my life would change forever.  It is always in retrospect that we are able to see a lot of truths that we had been blinded to.  Looking at Eli, I realized that my God knew EXACTLY what he was doing.  He also knew that I as too stubborn to submit to his will, so he moved on with his plan without me.  I am so thankful for that.

When I just had Eli, I was able to continue working.  I kept up with my career, and I loved it.  Can you believe that at this point I didn't want any more children!?  I was happy with Chris and Eli, and I loved our little family.  Then I became pregnant with Sophia.  During her pregnancy, I was laid off from my job.  I was shocked by this.  Of course, I look back at it now and realized that I would have kept working had that not been taken from me.  Sophia, our second little blessing, was born in September of 2008.

Just one short year later, Isaac, our third blessing was born in September of 2009.  Daniel came along last, in July of 2012.  I am told this is more "normal" spacing for children, but to me from my experience he seems very far apart in age from Isaac!

I am a full-time stay at home mom to these four amazing children.  We have our ups and downs, our hard times and our joys.  As they grow, I see myself grow.  I am happy and content with my role as a mother and am beyond thankful for these children.  I am not even close to the person I once was, and pray that in a few years I will look back at myself and be able to claim the same growth.