Tonight I have been thinking about the seasons this life has to offer.  Each season comes and each season passes.  Some seem faster than others, but they all cycle in and out the same way.

I have been a mother now for just nearing 7 years (since the time I found out I had a little Harlo bean in my belly.. the day before Mother’s Day 2008).  I can think back to that special day in my life like it was yesterday.  Sometimes I miss having just that one tiny girl, and then two little tiny girls.  Our days were long and chaotic with two toddlers running through our little rental house, and I was blissfully happy.  I think I truly thought my life would look like that forever.  But it didn’t.  They grew, and they grew, and they grew.  Our lives have changed, our home has changed, we have experienced both loss and beautiful blessings in these years together as a family on this Earth.  It is a beautiful thing.

I have been thinking back to the time when I was pregnant with my darling Grae baby and I was very ill.  I laid in bed or on the couch most of the day, either having or recovering from another dreaded migraine.  I would cry at night sometimes thinking of how many weeks it had been since I had cooked a meal or wrote a blog post or had enough energy to get up and play with my kids.  It seemed as if those days would never return.  I felt like I was failing as a mother and I felt depressed and worthless.  But those days didn’t last.  New days came, and what a blessing they were.  I experienced, yet again, the miracle of my body delivering a child, I felt good enough to cook again, and to run and play with my girls, and to do yoga again and to hardly be phased by sleepless nights.  It was a beautiful spring after the storm, and I am grateful for that.

Several weeks ago I got thinking about having another baby, I would love more children, but I felt so hopeless of ever carrying another one.  The last one was hard on my body, and even harder on my family to not have a functioning mother to run our sweet household.  I felt defeated and guilty for all of those months, both pregnant and newly post-partum of needing so much extra help and not carrying on like the mother I know I am.  For days I couldn’t get this off my mind.  On one of those days, while on a walk pushing the stroller and holding hands and skipping along the sidewalk, Stella stated out of the blue: “Mom, I love you having babies.”  It was the sweetest tender mercy in the form of such a darling little angel.  She told me how she missed my big belly and feeling the baby move, how fun it was when Grae was born to wake up to a surprise (they had been sleeping during my labor and woke up to a new sister in our bed).  She went on to squeal about how cute newborn Grae was and how much fun it had been to hold her and snuggle her and eat the cookies that neighbors and friends brought by.  In this moment, I had such a greater perspective.  Stella had not a single negative thing to say about that trying season of my life.  I had beat myself up so much over not being the best possible mother, and she hadn’t seemed to notice one single bit.  I love my sweet Stella.

While another Miller baby isn’t in our immediate future, I feel hopeful that I will be up to the task should we be blessed with another.  And even when I am sick day after live long day, I hope that I will remember that there is sun after a storm, a beautiful warm spring after a wet and dreary winter.  I will return to cooking and cleaning again, to playing hopscotch and jump rope with my girls again, to dressing up and feeling attractive to my husband again.  Sometimes the next season seems so far away, but once you get there, you realize how short the seasons really are.

Through the seasons of this life, I am so grateful for a God that loves me and sustains me – completely.  A God who knows my tender mama heart and is so easy on me as I try to navigate the heartbreak of motherhood, and who cheers me on as I celebrate the goodness of this life.

(ashley flowers photography)