Thursday, February 7, 2013

I Am That Mom: Amber

My name is Amber. I'm excited to share a little of my story with you today. I am a mother of two precious children. Sometimes I'm still in shock that I can use that word to describe me--mother--a word that at times seemed just out of reach. A word that seemed like it would never be a descriptor of Amber.

A couple years after I married my handsome husband (sometimes I call him "hot husband" but he really hates that), I convinced him that we needed to start trying to have children. You see I had this feeling even then that this wasn't going to be an easy road for us. He was not so sure about that, but realized quickly that the trying was fun and we threw caution to the wind. My initial fears were founded and it did not come so easily to us. I was devastated each and every month. I'll shorten that long dramatic story for you and tell you that several years later we began the adoption process to adopt through a domestic infant program.  We adopted an amazing little boy in the Spring of 2009.  You can read all about that story here.  We adopted a precious baby girl this past fall and you can read her story here.

My path to parenthood was wrought with a range of emotions, endless tears, fears and years of waiting.  I know, dramatic. Because of all this drama, I somehow told myself I would feel different than all these other moms that happened upon motherhood so easily.  I would never complain about my lack of sleep.  I would revel in it.  I would never snap at my child because I would just be soaking in every little minute of my time with them.  I would love crafts and spend my days finding new crafts to do.  Preschool?  Why oh why would I waste precious money on that?  I mean seriously, my child would be brilliant, because I would read to him and teach him from the very minute he was born. And those little electronic games? For the love--No child of mine would play with those lazy devices. TV? Babies and children watching TV -- NEVER. And the list goes on and on. My mind can't even contain the ideas that my brain filled up in all those years of waiting and watching other people parent. 

I would say that I didn't judge other people about the above things, but I just thought my child's life would be different.  You know, since I wanted and prayed so hard for it.  And the list goes on and on.  My mind can't even contain the ideas that my brain filled up in all those years of waiting and watching other people parent. 

If you are a mother, you can imagine how all those ideals, expectations and dreams vanished in the wind just like a little dandelion.  

I realized that this mothering thing will be the most difficult thing I will ever experience and will continue experiencing for the rest of my time on earth.

I became the mommy of an adorable newborn baby boy, who really did nap well and started sleeping through the night fairly early.  Nah, the lack of sleep didn't bother me.  I was still wondering what the moms were talking about being soo tired.  

I was eventually made aware that I had the most energetic baby boy I had ever met.  When he started crawling at five months and walking at nine months, I realized my life was O V E R!  

I became that mom who let her child watch television.  

When my son turned two, I became that mom who sent her son to preschool/daycare to go back to work a few days a week. I was devastated to leave him, but was a little embarrassed when I realized that I kinda enjoyed that he did so many crafts at school.  

I became that mom who hated crafts.  It wasn't my natural gift and I was so relieved when he had that creative outlet at school.  Since then I have embraced the kid craft thing due to the amount of time it will keep him from playing human pinball around my house when the baby is trying to sleep.  

And sadly, I became that mom who snapped at her child and raised her voice.  More times than I wish, I have had to ask my son to forgive me.  

When the second little bundle of joy came along, my eyes were opened to the exhaustion . That mom zombie-like exhaustion of having two children.  When one sleeps the other doesn't.  When the baby sleeps through the night, you three year old definitely won't.  You fall asleep in the dentist chair, at any given time during the day and you aren't always that smiley cheerful mom first thing in the morning.

I became that mom  who secretly loves the LeapPad because of my son's new-found ability to stay in his room for rest time to play with it.  Besides all the games are educational, right?  

And little by little, I've come to realize that all of us mothers are fighting a battle for our children's hearts. That no matter what path led us to motherhood, the emotions and struggles are the same. I realized that most of us moms do want what is best for our children.  I needed to climb off my judgmental soapbox of  "I wanted to be a mom more than you" and show love and mercy to all the other moms. I came to realize that I am in need of God's grace every moment of every day as a mom.  I often attempt to start my day without Him in it and am surprised when everything goes to crap before lunch time.  

I just began reading the book, Desperate, by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson.  My favorite part in the Introduction of the book was this, 

Down to the bone, to the deepest part of my soul, is the love 
I have for my children. Every day of my life is imperfectly offered 
to them. But the little years, they’re hard and oftentimes lonely. 
It’s like a secret we fear sharing, just how life-altering motherhood 
is, especially when you don’t have training or support. Let me pull 
back the curtain on the idea that just because you love and are 
thankful to be a mother, parenting will come easily or naturally. 
The lifetime commitment that is motherhood will, many days, 
stretch you beyond what you think you can handle."

Absolutely profound.  I encourage any mom of littles to read this book. It is amazing.  I hope you will embrace your amazing gift of motherhood and give yourself grace and forgiveness as you lean on Him for daily strength.

In closing, I thought I'd share a word that I am focusing on in 2013: Mercy.
Go here to read about my word of the year! 

Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
 (James 2:12, 13 NIV)

If you'd like to follow Amber in her adventures through motherhood, you can find her blog here or follow the link via her button on my sidebar. 


  1. Amber, Thank you for your transparency and honesty. The world needs more of that. Bless you for sharing your heart!


  2. I am with you. I treasured sleep and feared the sleepless baby and guess what - I got her. She was 8 weeks old when she started the awake-for-14-hours thing... she's almost three now and is up multiple times a night. She watches TV for a couple hours a day and I wil never regret it. I can work from home and she learns so much, and it creates a lot of make believe on the side! Since TV has always been a "watch however much you want" (don't judge), she'll turn it on and turn it off a few minutes later, tired with the idea. She's free to use it when she wants and for the most part she has it on just for background noise. I limit her to shows that I feel are good for her, and she continues to amaze me with what she's learning. I also became that mother that allows her to have sugar but now I'm majorly turning that around since she was totally addicted and only wanted "bananas and pancakes and treats!" Now she likes blueberries and turkey slices and hummus. She is VERY "spirited" and always has been, and it's hard for me because I am very impatient and irritable. I have my moments where I do not deal with things in the way that really works, but instead in the way that felt good (getting anger out) in the moment. We've always openly disciplined/corrected her (verbally, physically on the rare occasion that it's needed) in front of whomever whenever because she needs consistency. But it's easy to take that too far. Lah lah lah I could go on forever. I just relate, and I am also reading that book and the intro was a breath of fresh air.

    1. Thanks for your input, friend. I'm glad we all aren't the same-- think how boring that would be! You are fabulous mommy!

  3. Thank you for being so honest. I have been there four times over and I of COURSE still struggle. I want to be full of grace and mercy. I am checking out that book!

  4. Amber your family is beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Amber your family is beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Beautiful! I felt myself nodding along while reading it. :) I, too, waited 8 long years to become a mother and that finally happened when we adopted our son in Jan 2009. I, too, realized I had been blessed with the most energetic little person I had ever known in my life. ;) My ideas of how wonderfully I would parent quickly flew out the window!
    This sentence resonated deeply with me and brought tears to my eyes...
    "I needed to climb off my judgmental soapbox of "I wanted to be a mom more than you" and show love and mercy to all the other moms."
    ....mercy has not been my strong point after all I went through to become a mom and how much I still wish family building was easier so that we could have more.....I find myself putting a wall up with other moms who may be suffering through something...loss or whatever...because of course "I went through WAY more than that...." Thank you for reminding me that mercy is the answer every time. <3

    1. Thanks, Jamie!! Look forward to learning more about you and your family!! We are all a work in progress, huh?

  7. Love your blog, your beautiful family, and your honesty. :-) I am that Mom who will gladly let my two-year-old watch cat videos on youTube if it means I can sit still for five minutes. And I'm fairly certain the cat videos aren't all that educational. Eh well. Thanks for the book recommendation. Looking forward to it!


Cool people leave comments. Comments make me happy. You do the math.