Before becoming a mother, watching other parents would result in me either putting them on a pedestal or filing away situations and tactics that I would never want to be in or use when it was my turn. I compared myself, my thoughts, and my methods to everyone else and was determined that I was going to be the ideal parent.
As it turns out, becoming a parent has been incredibly humbling. There are days when I have felt like I'm an amazing mom and couldn't have done a better job. There are other days that I have felt like I have no right holding the responsibility for another life in my hands. However, it wasn't until recently (like a couple days ago) that I came to the realization that, regardless of the day or situation, Adam and I are the best and perfect parents for Maxwell. Probably not coincidentally (though it seemed that way, at the time), this was also echoed to me by a good friend that's since moved away while we chatted on Facebook. Thanks Bethany :). In hindsight, I believe that this was something God has been trying to tell me and convince me of, but stubborn as I am, it took a while (but thankfully only four months) to get to this point.
Without belaboring the point, I think God puts babies into certain families because the person he wants them to become depends on it. He knows our hearts and knows that we are the perfect parents for that child. As long as we pray about them and are certain that the choices we make are right for our family, nobody else's thoughts or opinions should matter or sway us, otherwise. God gave us Maxwell, and any siblings he will have, because He has a plan for them (and us) and we are an integral part of that.
It's in the moments that creep in that whisper to me how much better I could be doing that I try to remember that nobody's perfect. I remember that God doesn't believe that. He knows we all stumble and that as alone as I sometimes feel, I'm not the first person to feel any of those feelings. He's shown me that, even when I am physically alone, a deep breath and a prayer can help me get through. And with each smile and laugh Maxwell makes, I remember how blessed I am and how loved I am. With the cries, I remember that I'm needed. And when I need a break and hand him off to Adam, I remember that God gave me Adam, and Max his daddy, for that reason...so that I don't HAVE to do it alone.
Watching the Kings parent not only Jeremiah, but loving on the others and setting aside themselves for their family in this trying time has been an inspiration for me. I've also realized how much impact one child can have on everyone around him without ever realizing it. I've come to see that Max isn't just a gift for us, but for all those that surround us, too. I've done my best to share him with others around us so that he can bless them as Jeremiah has all of us. I want to know that, if anything did happen to him, that he'd share the love and support that Jeremiah has, and that even if nothing bad ever comes his way, that we've done everything we can to help him be the blessing that God intended him to be.
So, now my plan isn't to be the best mom in the world...but rather the best one in Max's.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." -Jeremiah 29:11