Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bittersweet By Heidi Rogers, mom of two

Bit•ter•sweet (adjective): arousing pleasure tinged with sadness or pain 

I think that describes parenting fairly well, wouldn’t you agree?

It starts even before they’re born – the joyous sight of a positive pregnancy test brings with it the plague of morning sickness. That precious first meeting takes place just after the torture of labor and delivery. Remember that first time they slept through the night and you woke up in a puddle of milk?
"Parenting is so full.
Full of both the bitter
and the sweet."

I imagine it only continues when you swell with pride, watching them walk to junior high all independent-like, then feel crushed when they’ve been teased. Do we even need to describe the whole they’re-16-and-can-get-themselves-places-but-now-I’m-worried-out-of-my-mind scenario? Ah, then they move out and we have freedom again. And we find ourselves missing even the painful parts.

Parenting is so full. Full of both the bitter and the sweet. And when Mary gazed upon her firstborn son so many years ago, I imagine she felt that very fullness. Knowing her son’s purpose, witnessing the fanfare accompanying his birth – perhaps this duality was exactly what she treasured up and pondered in her heart.  

Dear God, thank you for creating a mother’s heart. To love, protect, marvel, and even to weep. Help me embrace my child in a way that honors both him and you. Amen. 

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