You Get the Kids You are Meant to Have – XP

So last week I shared with you part of the story of how my family came to be.  It’s a great story that I’m really proud to “own”.  But there is a big piece of that story that I haven’t yet shared with you.  The piece of the story that goes like this: It was so hard and I was so freaking scared.

 

And no, I’m not talking about the infertility or the reunification talks, the long waits or the emotional rollercoaster of unknowns.

 

I’m talking about the parenting. 

 

I’ve dreamt of being a mother since I was young.  I knew it was my life’s goal.  I worked with children from the youngest age I possibly could and studied child psychology with a specialty in behavior modification.  And yet, during that long, cold December when a 6 week old and a 3 year old were dropped at my doorstep, I quickly came to realize that I had no idea what I was doing.

 

The baby screamed all night long and the 3 year old screamed all day long.  I still have a visceral memory of flushed cheeks and ringing ears for days on end.  It seemed as though nothing I did would ever stop the tantrums.  How could I? This poor child has experienced more trauma and who-knows-what in his short life than I ever had. I was in way over my head and the fear – oh my God, the fear.  Can I handle this?  What did I get myself into?  Why did I ever think I could help children like him? Did I just make the biggest mistake of my life (and this child’s!)??  That winter came with some of the darkest emotions I have ever felt. 

 

But the days tumbled into months and have now become years.  I still won’t sit here and tell you that parenting is easy, but now I know.  I know I can do it.  I was meant to do it and there was no mistake made in this match.

 

You get the kids you are meant to have.

 

Sure, they may not come exactly as you expected them to.  Maybe you are the mother of a preemie, or a child with special needs.  Perhaps your baby had colic, or your preschooler is “determined”, “spirited”, or “willful”. Maybe you have found yourself single parenting when you never planned it to be that way.  Or maybe you’ve got a teenager (enough said, right?). 

 

Whatever it is, whenever your day comes, please know that it is okay to feel overwhelmed.  Its okay to feel scared and uncertain. I felt that way too.  But also know that there was no mistake in matching your child to you.  You were called to this job because you can do it and you can do it well.  Your children got the mom they were meant to have.

 

This parenting gig has been the most humbing experience of my life, but man, I’ve also never felt more proud.  What do you think? Can you relate?

 

 

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3 Comments to “You Get the Kids You are Meant to Have – XP”

  1. “Your children got the mom they were meant to have.”
    That line brought tears to my eyes. I constantly question if I am the right mom for our little miss and this post made me feel not so alone. Thank you.

  2. I have tears. Thank you. Thank you so very much for writing this. I have 1 biological child and it is hard, but very doable. Still, I am so scared of all the things you wrote about being scared about. We hope to become foster parents and adopt from the foster care system. We hope for 2 kids that are younger than our 5 year old daughter. Most especially on the days that it is hard to parent one healthy biological child I wonder, can I really do this? What on earth makes me think I can handle more kids, especially kids that have experienced trauma my biological child never has? I’m still scared. I read blogs to get a real picture of what life is like as a foster and adoptive parent to try to be as prepared as possible. As a parent already I know that I can only be so prepared and the bulk of parenting is on the job training. I need to hear stories like yours that are successful and know that you too were scared. It gives me hope that the fear is normal and that although I wonder if I can do it, I am being led to parent the children I’m meant to parent and that somehow I will be the parent my children are meant to have.
    Thank you.

  3. Just coming back from vacation and catching up. This post and the one above are so well timed for me. We worked it out quickly, but MIL and I got in a little tiff at one point because my parenting style is just so different then hers was. I needed to be reminded that my Gwen is the perfect Gwen for me, and that while none of us are perfect and we all have off days, we’re doing the best we can together. Hugs.

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