Guest Post: Is motherhood all it's cracked up to be?

Doesn't it seem like there are a lot of new babies when you look at your FB friends? Well, I thought I'd ask one or two momma's I know to share their experience as a new mom and how it has pointed them back to Jesus. This is Ysabel. Besides being a good friend, she's also a stay at home mom, and wife to seminary student :) Their son, Adiah, was given to them December 28th 2011 looking just like his daddy. May you be encouraged by her post...
Ysabel & Adiah

Motherhood. It’s what I’ve always dreamed about. Well, to be a wife AND a mother is what I’ve always dreamed about. Now I’m just that, a wife to the most amazing man and a mother to a beautiful baby boy. 

Is it all it’s cracked up to be? Yes and no. 

I love being a wife! I’m married to a man who loves me endlessly, who reminds me that my righteousness is not in my ability to keep a clean house but in Jesus. Who encourages me to have dreams and to pursue them. Who is such an example to me by how he loves our Savior! So yes, marriage was exactly what I thought: pure bliss!! So why wouldn’t being a mother be the same?? That’s where I was dead wrong! From the time he implanted in my uterus, it has been the start of a VERY sanctifying journey.  

Being a mom is very hard work. It’s a round the clock kind of work. There are moments when I think, “I really wanted this??” or “if he cries another minute, I’m gonna cry,” “sleep. That’s all I want, sleep.” Then there are moments where I look at him and my heart feels like it will burst because I just love him so much that I can barley handle it. Or when he’s snuggled on me and sleeping so sweetly I think “Please, please don’t ever grow up.” I’m such a bag of mixed emotions these days.

But one thing is for certain, idols are being exposed! Like One. Right.  After.  Another. One of the many is my need for comfort. Pregnancy was the most uncomfortable 39 weeks. Recovery after having him wasn’t fun either and being sleep deprived hasn’t been a walk through the park. But what I’m learning and having to be reminded of is that I’m not promised a comfortable life nor am I entitled to one. There is one thing in this life that I am entitled to and that is hell (Rom. 3:23). When I think of that I’m reminded of my NEED-my need for someone bigger than myself and my lack of sleep. I’m reminded that I need something that has more strength to get me through the day than my tall iced coffee. One who will make my idols “fall to the ground on their faces” (1 Sam. 5:3-5).That One is Jesus. His life didn’t revolve around what made him most comfortable and if anyone was entitled to a comfortable life it would have been Him. He suffered a horrific death on the cross so that a selfish sinful girl (me) could be forgiven (1Cor. 15:3-5).  So motherhood may not be all that I dreamed it would be, no, but it is refining me and making me cling to the Gospel more than I ever have before, so I’ll take it! :)

God is in Control of Rosie's Life

When you have a newborn it's almost expected that you keep her home from the filthy germs of the outside world for about month before bringing her into public places. (Actually the birthing class instructor recommended more than that). However, the more I read about it, it seems more like on old wives tale more than anything. My pediatrician and the classes I took from Kaiser never said anything about this. And the pregnancy bible (What to Expect when you are expecting) said that unless it's under 20 degrees , over 90 degrees, or during the flu season, there's really no need to keep a newborn indoors. BUT, for some reason I felt that it was the right thing to do, and seasoned mothers even praised us for it.

Our thinking was challenged by someone who loved our souls enough to challenge it. He asked us to search our hearts and make sure we weren't keeping Rosie home to give us a false sense of being in control of her life. Does that make sense? When our intentions were questioned it was hard but good. I just started crying to James and said "But what if she catches something and dies?" As I thought about it more, I realized she was home with me when James was at church b/c we didn't want people touching her yet, or holding her. I was home with Rosie b/c I thought thats what good moms do (I was also in quite a bit of pain). But the truth was that, she could have got sick at home, or hurt at home.

An encounter with a spider made this even more clear to me. I left her on the bed to nap for a bit.  When I came in to check on her, there was a nasty looking spider chillin by her head. I smacked it with my hand immediately and texted James about how Rosie didn't get a bite.  His text back to me was "I guess God really is control, huh?" Yea, I guess so!

We kept her home, as means to be in control of her health...but the truth is anything could happen to her at any moment. Whether it happens at home or out of the home, God is control of her life, not me. Whether you keep your baby home for a bit after she's born or not, remember God is control of her life, not you. May that sweet truth release you from the expectations of others, and worries of your mind.

Side Note: I don't look down on anybody who keeps their babies home! I know each situation is different and after you give birth to a baby just walking around is not an easy task-so home sometimes is just better. But it's so good for us to check our hearts or have our hearts checked by someone that loves us so that we don't think we are in control of the lives of our precious little babies. 


All things Family...

I don't have time to read every single post of the blogs I follow but before clearing my blog roll I always skim for topics about family life-especially parenting and children. Here are the ones that I found and liked this past week or so. Hope you find some helpful.

Some Thoughts on Guns and YouTube Scoldings as Parenting Tools Remember that video of a Father putting his daughter on blast b/c she wrote badly about her parents on FB? Here are some thoughts on that as a response.

How Shame and Guilt can Enter Into Parenting "You're not going to eat after I worked so hard on it?" "There are starving children in Africa" "Do you know how I hard I work to put food on your plate?" Sound familiar? Here's a great video on why those things can be destructive and devoid of the gospel.

How to help your husband when he's crticized C.J. Mahaney and his wife, Carolyn, talk about how to be a helper to your husband when he is being criticized by the church/family/friends. Good things to keep in mind!

Kids Feel What Parents Expressively Feel A video by John Piper on an experience he had with his grandchildren.

Teach Children the Bible is Not About Them (Thanks Chrisha) A great post by Author Sally Lloyd Jones of The Jesus Story Book Bible

Praying with my baby

Today was my first time praying with Rosie. I think I never did it out loud with her before b/c my thinking is that she doesn't get it anyways. The truth is, she probably doesn't right now. But it won't be long before she does, and I want it to already be in place.

She's only 3 months- so I have to admit it was a little strange getting that "Dear God" out. But as I started talking, it was a really sweet time with Jesus and Rosie before putting her down for bed. I want that to become so much of an evening routine so that it's weird when we don't talk to Jesus before bed.

What did I pray for?

That God would keep her healthy, help her to sleep sweetly, and that He would bring Rosie to treasure Him above all. I prayed that James and I would always point her to Jesus. May God be gracious in our parenting with her, and save our itty-bitty sinner :)


When I grow up I wanna be....

This week was my first week back to work. I went from 30 hours to 20 hours so it's a nice break to be out of the house and not miss Rosie too much and at the same time do what I love-teach preschoolers. It was a very warm welcome. The kids made a sign and colored it for me and there were a couple of girls and one teacher :) that were extra excited to see me.

Today at work I gathered some quotes from the kiddos. The topic? Career Plans. I asked them "What do you want to be when you grow up?" Here are some of their responses.

"When I grow up I wanna be ..... a cooker and a babysitter."

"When I grow up I wanna be ...... a BEAR! No, actually I want to be a hunter. I want to go to the African savanna and shoot a cheetah."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....a hunter like he."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....a wifeguard."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....a police."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....a mommy."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....a fairy."

"When I grow up I wanna be .....still little so I don't miss my mommy."

I loved the African Savanna one! What was your favorite? Do you remember what you wanted to be when you were little? I wanted to be a teacher. In fact, I'd make my little brother play school with me. He played until he got sick of doing the homework I gave him :)


Pro-Life Images

I missed Sanctity of Human Life Sunday (January 22nd, 2012)
 But here are some Pro-Life images that I love.


All things family...

Preparing Eight-Year-Olds for Marriage- Looking for a good blog on marriage, parenting & children? This is a good one to follow called Shepherd Press. This particular post takes a look at Tim Keller's book The Meaning of Marriage and talks about why it's important to teach children about biblical friendship so as to prepare them for future marriage. Very good post.

10 Ways to Love Your Children- From The Resurgence blog here are some biblical ways to love your children. Enjoy.

Healing After an Abortion- In this video David Powilson talks about how to heal from the guilt and shame of an abortion. I am Pro-Life. But doesn't that mean I don't have a heart for those who have had an abortion. I can only imagine the weight of carrying that around. I pray this video blesses someone.

C.S. Lewis on Young Parents- some fun quotes from C.S. Lewis.

Daddy Dates- Oh how I love this idea. James does something similar on Saturday and Sunday mornings. He takes care of Rosie in the mornings while I sleep in. 


Training Parents How To Discipline With The End In View

I love Russell Moore. I want James to go Southern Baptist Theological Seminary just so I can sit in on Russell Moore's lectures (Don't worry Church fam, I don't want that more than I love Kaleo). He's a big  Adoption advocate. In fact, Russell Moore wrote Adopted for Life, a book about our adoption as believers and the call to adopt orphans. Last March, I was blessed by my church to attend the Children Desiring God conference in Minnesota and doubly blessed when I got to meet and listen to Russell Moore speak on parenting. He's not a boring speaker by any means and he's very easy to listen to. This is one of the messages I got to hear. If you have some time, I hope it blesses you.

Training Parents How to Discipline with the End in View from Children Desiring God on Vimeo.

Liked that? Well read more of what he has to say on other topics as well here at his blog.


Postpartum Sin

Have you ever seen those cutsie moms with their cutsie newborns in the hip slings with their very trendy outfits on? Well, I don’t know about you, but when I was pregnant with Rosie I always noticed them! I knew having a newborn is hard work but how did they look so “put together”? I looked at them, and took a mental picture of how I wanted to be…as would soon be revealed…at the cost of idolatry.
When you have an amazing church family and a newborn, you get lots of meals and visitors. And that’s what I have. When visitors would come over, I always wanted the house to be tidy and even if I was still wearing my maternity clothes, I wanted to look nice. You know, like having a newborn “ain’t no thang.” Even though I was in pain and could hardly sit in any normal position, I didn’t want it to show.  Vanity, my precious idol, was starting to surface.

How did I know that wanting the house to look nice and me wanting to look nice were idolatry? Well, I’d get super stressed out if I knew people were coming over and the living room was messy. I’d get mad at James if he didn’t help me clean up right away. A clean house came before wanting to spend time with God. And when it came to my appearance, I LOVED hearing “you don’t even look like you had a baby” comments-more than I LOVED hearing what God has to say in HIS word.

I really noticed my vanity when one day I started thinking about what I would wear to church my first night back. At first it seems harmless. I mean, seriously, it would be one of my first nights out of the house in a few weeks! But when you weigh what church is really about and what I was excited about, one side was heavier than the other. I wasn’t as excited to hear about Jesus and praise God with His people as I was about what I’d wear. Pretty sad.

I think I still struggle with this. I have to fight my vanity with the truth that I have nothing to boast in, unless it’s in the cross. Because someone far more beautiful and lovely than me looked his worst FOR me. On the cross he was beaten and killed to take away my sins and make a way for me to be near God.

Moms with newborns, take the time to look nice and clean your house (and praise God if you have the time to do those things), but not at the cost of finding more joy in it, than your Savior.

I suppose I will get some comment saying that wanting the house clean and wanting to look nice are not bad things. To that I would agree. But my heart was looking for joy and satisfaction in those things instead of Jesus-and that’s NOT right. Anything good can be replaced with Jesus. It’s not the good things that are bad…its our wicked hearts.


Baby Comparisons

Before Rosie was born I wondered how it would be to have a baby with fair skin, blue eyes, and light hair. I suppose I just figured my features would be dominant and that we'd have a baby with dark and dark eyes.  So now that Rosie has blue eyes, fair skin, and light brown hair I'm always so happy when people say that she looks like me. Recently my mom brought my baby pictures and I thought I'd post a couple of Rosie and a couple of me-just for fun. ( I promise, I'm working on more serious posts)

I think we have similar smiley faces. 

Ooo the blank stare... Same shape of eyes just diff color is the general consensus.

I'll try and get some baby pictuers of James too!


Rosie Noella Burdette is here!

Well, if you don't already know from FB, Rosie is here! Rosie was born November 15th, 2011 at 2:30 in the morning. She weighted 7 pounds and 13 ounces and was 20 inches long. She was/is healthy.

Birth Story 
(for those of you who were asking me to share it)
When she didn't come on her due date (surprise, surprise) we went in for an ultra sound to make sure there was enough amniotic fluid for her. Turned out that there wasn't and the doctors strongly suggested I go to the hospital to be induced. Their worry was that there could be cord trauma. Maybe oxygen would be cut off to Rosie and end up in a stillbirth. I really didn't want to be induced and was willing to wait to be at least two weeks over due before I'd consider it. But when the doctor said "still birth" that changed things a little. We went home and looked up that stats for the possibility of a stillbirth in my situation and it was less than 1%. However, I didn't want Rosie to be that less than 1% so we prayed about it at home and decided to head to the hospital.

Once I was there they checked to see if I was dilated. I wasn't, but the doctor "accidentally" popped my water bag. (I wanted that to happen naturally too) It was a blessing though b/c it got contractions going for awhile to delay the pitocin. After 6 hours of contractions w/o pitocin, they decided I wasn't progressing fast enough and gave me some pitocin. Thats when active labor kicked in and I could really feel those contractions. At 4cm dilated I wanted an epidural but my husband and friend knew thats not what I originally wanted so encouraged me to stick it out a little longer. About an hour later I was fully dilated and ready to push. Rosie was out 45 minutes later. O, yes, tons of fun. With pitocin and no epidural giving birth was by far the hardest most painful thing I've physically done. (The aftermath on my body wasn't so easy either) But as all Moms say "It was worth it." And it really was. We love our Rosie.

I've been so busy I haven't been able to write or post pictures or anything! So now 2 1/2 months later I'm back! Here are some pictures of our Rosie girl.


1 month old

2 months old

Most recent 2 1/2 months old

Though it didn't initially feel like it, God is teaching me a lot. Taking care of a baby has definitely revealed a lot of sin in my heart but God has been gracious in also showing me His abundant grace.  I hope to share some of those things with you guys. So stay tuned if anybody is still out there :)