Follow along with my 31 Days of a Mentor Mom series
After speaking at a conference recently, a young mom asked, “How does it work when you nurse a baby, have a toddler running around and attempt to teach?”
The question, by default, was directed at me since I was the “speaker.”
I wanted to stay quiet. I didn’t want to put on a “happy, this is what I am supposed to say face” and answer.
It had been a long, frustrating week for this mom, but I responded honestly…with a long term vision of motherhood.
I cling to that vision on days when I want to stay in bed and cry (or scream.)
I invite you to join me.
Remember your calling.
This challenging, but treasured, calling of mothering christened the very first post written on this blog nearly five years ago.
If nothing else…I need a reminder this week! A reminder of my vision!
(I share this post first because tomorrow I’ll share how this sweet blessing son of ours gave us a run for our money AFTER I wrote this post.)
One of the things that I passionately try to address when I speak to womens’ groups are the labels we hypothetically predetermine…”the terrible two’s” (especially at Mops) , or “just wait till they’re teenagers”, etc. I do not believe that has to be the case, but yes, I’ll save that for a different post.
This post is for me.
A reminder of my calling.
A whisper from my Heavenly Father the goodness of a relationship with your teen when a mommy’s heart is fully engaged in reaching his.
Don’t get me wrong, teen years are tough emotionally, and I am only a few years into it. I mess up…royally… and am often asking forgiveness from those very blessings whom I desire to mentor.
Yet these years are so precious. It’s a small window in which we can watch as the Lord bring boys into manhood. I want to be there – front and center – enjoying every minute of it. It is racing by, and I want to capture those “manhood” moments. That’s what this post is about.
It was a mommy moment when the Lord reached out during a season of drought, and assured me…he is mine!
It started with some musing from “the mom” about the gross nature of dried and crack heels. Yep, you got it… ugly feet, and sheer vanity. I am not really a pedicure kind of gal (clarification…wasn’t), but necessity was rearing it’s ugly head when even my 5 year old daughter realized the drastic measures that needed to take place if mommy was going to continue in her usual flip flop foot fashion.
Yesterday morning, my oldest son and I were alone in the family room and he called me over to my comfy chair.
“Mom, let me try out this Ped Egg” out on you,” he said.
(For those of you wondering…this pedicure tool won out on our local news “deal or dud segment.”)
I must tell you, I was a little taken back and wondered what his primary motives were.
I mean, come on, this is a gross task and he just told me being a pedicurist would be a disgusting job. I do believe he said, “Can you imagine all the nasty feet that people have?”
And now he was searching out those feet…namely mine?
My “terrible teen” went on to spend not five minutes, not ten, but over 30 minutes meticulously getting every bit of dry skin off my ugly feet. Then he took lotion, and massaged those feet, and made sure that they were smooth and beautiful.
And in those moments, I saw Jesus…through my son.
We shared life those 30 minutes.
We talked about Jesus washing the disciples feet and I couldn’t help but point out how this act of service reaches down to the core of who someone is.
That’s why Jesus choose it. It’s embarrassing, and yet as my eldest took care of “my man feet,” he ministered to me in a way, a simple way, that makes an impact for life.
He won’t know what an impact it had. He has no understanding of the way that Jesus whispered through him.
Only I could see, through tearful eyes, a boy share a moment of manhood with his momma.
This was beautiful! My oldest is 18, and watching her grow into a young woman is so awesome. Now those moments when she falls back into whiney selfish childhood are not to fun, but those are becoming less and less. 🙂
I just found your blog a couple of days ago. I’m excited to read more of it because I aspire to be the kind of woman that you are striving for.
This post brought tears to my eyes. You must be a really great mom to have raised a son who would take the time to do something like this. I love this post:) Thanks for sharing
Okay… darn you! LOL
I’ve been an emotional wreck for the past day or two.. (crying at everything..). I thought I’d finally put myself back together when BAM! I come here and read this post.
Now I sit with tears streaming down my face. My oldest 2 are teenage boys and I can relate so well to this story. (well.. not to the pedicure part cause no way would either one of them touch my nasty feet..).
What a good boy you have raised. Well done Mum!
oh what a man God is making here! Love this post! my oldest just turned 27 yesterday, and he is just such a man. I love seeing what God is doing in his life! Isn’t it fun to watch???
Beautiful! What a story!
What an awesome post. I pray that I have and will continue to instill godly characters in my children and love it when you see the fruit of that…
Came over from SITS!
OK so this is the best post EVER! What a big sweetheart you have on your hands. It’s a testiment of what a great job his parents are doing! Tears..steaming down my face. Thanks for the lovely story.
I get ya! Teenagers are alot of work but when they give back… it’s always worth it~
as a mom of two little boys… this made me smile and I actually look forward to the teenage years… what a blessing to be able to talk to them on deeper levels… and maybe get a foot rub out of it… so great!!! thanks for sharing
Beautiful. It is true that teens do not have to be terrible. I have two in their teens and they are wonderful! They are young women of faith.
You are raising a man of God that will honor his wife one day.
“they shall rise up and call her blessed”!!!
I pray that my son and daughter will have those precious moments with me. Rather I pray that I acknowledge those moments and don’t let them pass me by. I get so busy that I can’t even see my little ones wanting “me”. But not just me, more of me. I don’t want to miss out on a single moment.
What a sweetie!
I agree with the terrible twos and all..now I don’t have teenagers but I hope it will be a blessing for me and our relationships will be strong!
What a sweet sweet post!
Okay Jen, this is my most favorite post ever from you. I am sitting here with tears in my eyes. I completely hear what you are saying here because of having two sons of my own (12 and 11) as well as a daughter who will be 18 this weekend. The teenage years are tough but my husband and I went into them trying to be as prepared as possible for what we were facing. We read many books, prayed A LOT, and also were committed to enjoying this time with her as we will with our boys. Have we made mistakes along the way… absolutely! We have all learned a lot and in spite of everything there has always been grace and unconditional love. Thank you so much for sharing this story.
sooo sweet! thanks for sharing
I too have tears in my eyes but for a totally different perspective with my teen right now. I posted about it this morning and then i just saw this on my blog roll. I tell myself that she is His. Its what I cling to.. ♥ LA
My daughter takes care of me in a girl way, but it is when my boys (who are older than the girl) take care of me that my heart is especially wrenched. My oldest is 18 and now living in the dorms and I miss him and I don’t, but that is part of our journey. These memories you have show that you’ve done your job and he will be a wonderful husband.
Thank you for this story. My boys are 4 and almost 2, and this is the toughest stage so far with the combination of those ages. Yet when I tell older moms this, I rarely hear anything other than, “Well just wait ’til…” I’m so tired of feeling like if I get through one stage successfully and with my sanity intact, there’s another (worse) stage waiting for me. I know parenting is difficult. I know there will be harder times and easier times. What we need, as moms of younger kids, is encouragement. Like yours. We do not need someone to tell us how bad it’s going to be in ten years. So thank you again for being a source of encouragement as I try to raise my boys into godly men.
I think you’d like my post today! It goes perfectly with yours.
What a wonderful story. I don’t even like touching my own feet during the winter months – what a sweetheart he is. What a blessing for you both just sitting and talking.
I love this post, Jen! I felt the same way when my kids were teens. I loved every minute of my time with them. They taught me so much and still do. I have one daughter that always gave me a foot rub if she knew I was stressed out or particularly tired. It is a very Christ like act. I also love that ped-egg thing. It works wonders. Enjoy your son, what a sweetheart. My daughter now lives in Italy and my feet show it!
So sweet! You are raising an amazing young man.
How completely wonderful! What a good husband he is going to be someday! Kelly
Thank you for sharing this!! I have tears in my eyes!!! I am enjoying the teen years so far, so this is encouraging!!!
I didn’t have time to cry this afternoon – but this did me in. Thanks so much for sharing. My oldest boy is 10 and I just feel so sobered at what will transpire in his life in these next years. I want to reflect the sweet and good parts of those years.
By the way, that boy of yours looks like his momma. I think.
Weep, sniff, that was perfect!
I have a 10 year old who knows that I love nothing more than to have my feet rubbed. He will often stop his route through a room if he notices that I’m laying on the couch or sitting for awhile and rub my feet.
Yes, teenagerhood is different (I have a 12 year old and we’re entering…) but, when those boys understand the gospel, love their mother, and feel her love, those years are manageable and wonderful.
Jen great post! Puking all over at this Palace… now on to disinfection. Thanks for your encouragement!
How precious, Jen!
What a gift from our Father to get to see little glimpses of Him in our children!
What a great story! He must be a very special teenager!
Thanks for also letting us know the ped-egg really works. I have terrible feet too.
I thank God for you, for your kids and for the chance to do lif with you all. Love ya
Hi Jen, so glad to be back online and catching up on your blog… this is such a sweet post. PS ~ I had wondered about the PedEgg (a little nervous about it truthfully). 🙂
Thanks for sharing this as I remember why I am homeschooling and the girl’s I am raising to become women in this world.
WOW. This momma is typing through her tears. What a touching story. I wasn’t even there, but I feel like I experienced something powerful. I pray that I can raise my boys half as good as you’re raising yours! Thanks for sharing that beautful moment with us.
What a sweet gesture from your beautiful boy.
You know, we are running headlong into the teen years, too.. and I really hate all the stereotypes that everyone puts out there. I am thinking “well if you expect them to be BAD, then they may do it to live up to your foolish expectations”.
This is a beautiful post and brought tears to my eyes. Hopefully your son won’t be embarrassed that you shared it. I think most kids who have moms with blogs know that anything they say or do can end up as blog post material!
We’ve home schooled both our children, 21 yo daughter and 16 yo son. I’ve had it pretty easy for the most part. I totally agree, the teen years, while challenging at times, don’t have to be terrible.
I have a pedi-egg, and love it. I do not have a teen yet, so I will just do it myself-
Your son sounds like a sweetie!
I have a pedi-egg, and love it. I do not have a teen yet, so I will just do it myself-
Your son sounds like a sweetie!
What a great post. I got a lump in my throat. My oldest son will be 24 next month. I have a 19 year old daughter and a 10 year old son. I’ve been through the “teen years” twice now and they say that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. ha ha It’s amazing to see our little ones grow up to make wise (and sometimes foolish) decisions. But it’s always a miracle that God has entrusted them to another human to raise, like he did his son! Being a mother is an awesome task!
THIS is beautiful living at its very best! What an act of service your son preformed and what a teaching moment God provided for you to share. Thank you for blessing me today.
Oh, what a wonderful son you have! I can hardly see to type cause I’m so teary :), what love was shown!! I know you’ll treasure this time together in your heart always!!!
Wow!! I still get tears when out of the blue my four year old throws his arms around me and says “you’re my favoritest mommy” can’t imagine the tears when a teenager does it!
WOW! This post brought tears to my eyes! This is truly beautiful and a wonderful memory!
What a beautiful illustration of Christ’s love. What an incredible servant you’ve raised.
So encouraging. Thanks for sharing.
Aww. That is so sweet. What a special moment and memory.
That was beautiful! As a mom who has a nearly 21 year old, a 17 year old and an 8 year old, I know of all the stages you mentioned, from the “terrible” twos to the “unruly” teens!
Moments like you experienced are those rare times when you know you are getting through, they are becoming more selfless, and best of all, they are becoming men and women of God!
What a precious story and what a sweet son! As a mom of an almost 20 year old and a 10 year old, I too know the joys of both. I think the teen years were very rewarding and I loved homeschooling through those years as well…it was so neat to have “almost adult” conversation while learning! 🙂 It’s on a whole different scale…but what a blessing!
Thanks for sharing!
Wow, what a great story. I see my 10 year old slowly evolving from “my little boy” into a young man and it is a bittersweet time for me.
I am however, finding myself more often these days enjoying this new person he is becoming instead of wishing he were my baby again.
Thanks for sharing!
Wow…this was truly beautiful. I don’t have sons but it brought tears to my eyes….
Thank you for joining in at the last moment!
(Lattes and Lollipops)
This brought tears to my eyes! Thanks so much for being the first one to venture to my carnival! I hope you’ll be back next week- this was great!
Thank you so much for this. My son (who has only been homeschooled) is 13. We don’t have a fraction of the problems with him that I was led to believe we would. He is not perfect and some day’s I’d like to thunk him on the side of the head . . . . . but it’s so much better than I thought it would be.
I followed your tweet to “Three Boys, Lots of Crazy” and found this linked. I am so glad I did. JUST the encouragement I needed today in my weary state. We have two wonderful grown children, but two young ones at home that wear me down some days. We must keep looking forward, it is SO worth it! Thanks.
What a great story. As the mom of two little boys and no girls, sometimes I feel a little sorry for myself that I won’t get to have all those special mother-daughter moments with a teen girl, like shopping for prom dresses, etc. Thanks for the reminder that the mom-son relationship can be just as special, although of course it will be different.
I am probably older than most of your of blog followers. My children (2) are grown up and live on their own but your wisdom and grace never fail to stir those “mommy moments” deep inside, kept as cherished memories. I wish I could have had your blog 30 years ago to inspire, rescue, renew, restore, reassure and remind me as I traveled those roads of motherhood. Your blog is my favorite and I read it faithfully. I feel as if we are a great friends! Thank you dear friend.
oh, I just wish I could give you a great, big hug in person for those words of encouragement. Lately, I;ve wondered, do I keep writing? With so many blogs do my words matter? Thank you for this!
Wow – those teen boys can get our hearts, can’t they? I’m sitting here looking at my 12 year old. He is all boy, full of energy and goes non stop all day. He could stay up all night if I let him and still keep going. It’s amazing how he is turning into a young man right in front of me. Thank you for this reminder especially as my own energy seems to be wavering.
Jen, in response to YOUR comment above….PLEASE don’t stop writing! You are grounded in the Word, have a family of various aged children, aren’t afraid to be REAL….all these things make your blog a valuable resource for other moms walking the same road.