I'm not sure it matters if you have one child or six children like me, every child wants a piece of their mama and I am no exception! I have also found that the age of the child apparently doesn't seem to effect their need for mommy either.
For example: Every once and a while my little guy will ask to swing on my arm. Yes, that's right, 'swing' on my arm and yes, I allow this. But of course, my little girl sees her brother having fun with mommy and takes the other arm and begins to swing. But on this particular day my big boy wanted in too! My teenager. Okay, so this was more of a funny afternoon at our home, but there are days when, and I cannot stress this enough, everyone wants a piece of me!
Years ago when I was nursing my infants, golly! how they wanted a piece of me, but then as they grew into the toddler stage, surprisingly, not much changed. They still needed me at every turn. As they continued to grow and become more independent they wanted me to play with them, read to them and with schooling them, of course, they really needed me. I remember having this thought, "At some point, there will be a stage in my children's life where they will grow up and not need me as much or want me as much," but it just isn't true. I guess what I'm learning is, (now that I have teenagers), that all children, no matter the age, still want and need their mommy.
I used to think that anyone could do my job. After all, what was I doing?
Feeding, changing, cleaning, REPEAT.
But with the feeding, and changing and cleaning, I have been talking to my children, encouraging them, teaching them and loving them in a way that no babysitter, nanny, or au pair, could love or teach them. (I don't know that I've always known that). But seeing my teenager come to get a hug or kiss, or even to tell me all about their day, or snuggle with me on the couch, I realize that I am important to them.
I also used to think that the little people in my home or 'littles' as I call them, have more needs then older children, but that really isn't the case. Sure, my little guys need help with school, tying their shoes, and at tub times, but the big kids need help with school, help with the computer, and they need lots and lots, and LOTS of talking time. Mostly, I am finding that every child, no matter the age, need their mommy. Whether it be my kisses, hugs, gentle talk, or just special alone time. I had no idea how important my role as a mommy was until my children began growing into teens.
So, if you are a mom of littles and think, "One day my little guys will be more independent and I will have more time to myself or at least some time to myself" think again. Your children, and your 'independent' teens, need you and what I'm discovering...it's truly a wonderful thing. Yes, there are days where I wish I had a little bit more quiet time, but honestly, the fact that I have a relationship with my children and they want to be with me is more precious to me than being alone in my room and typing an article for the blog. I treasure my relationship with them. I adore being in there life, and learning about the things they are interested in and hear how they see the world or hear from God. They are fascinating people.
So, after I had this revelation I went straight to the Scriptures to see what the Bible says about moms. I found a few great ones:
"Truly I am your servant, LORD; I serve you just as my mother did; you have freed me from my chains."(Psalm 116:16) Here we see that we are an example of Godliness to our children. They can follow in our footsteps into Righteousness. How exciting that my love for Jesus can and will be something for them to desire and follow! We are the first Christians in their life for them to look up to and know Him.
"My son, keep your father's command and do not forsake your mother's teaching." (Proverbs 6:20) We have the opportunity to teach our children the ways of the Lord and they are encouraged to follow it and remember it! What an honor we have been given. We need to teach them right!
And my favorite Scripture is this: "As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you;" Isaiah 66:13 As an Italian, I am naturally an affectionate person, but as a mommy, well, maybe I over do it a bit! I love to kiss and hug them all day long. I love for them to curl up with me and feel at peace. I love for them to feel that they can rest and know I'll stay awake and watch over them. God uses this! God tells our children that He will comfort them as we, their mommy, has comforted them. God can do such a better job and yet He compares the comfort He will give to something we have given to our children. What an encouragement to us moms to comfort our children more so they can trust and know that God will comfort them.
Mommyhood can be hard, I know. Some days the kids are just hanging all over me and I don't have a minute to myself. Some days everyone wants a piece of me, but it's a great thing. God will use it all to build my relationship with them which ultimately builds a relationship with Him.