My husband found an old roll of film the other day. That’s right — a ROLL of FILM. The kind you take to the store and have developed. The kind that remains a mystery until it materializes into images that surprise you.
I have to tell you, I was geniunely nervous.
Was I going to remember what was in the pictures? Was I going to be skinny? (Oh Lord, I don’t want to see that.)
What if it screams at me, reminding me of all of my inadequacies? What if all I see are bad times? The mommy guilt voices were so loud, so judgmental.
As we opened the package from the store with PICTURES in it — the kind you can touch and feel, the kind you can hold up to the light to see more, the kind that you can’t edit — we saw them:
Lots of smiles. Toothless smiles, new-toothed smiles and even the ones on our 12 year younger faces.
I didn’t see a harried mom with a messy house and bags under her eyes. Indeed, it didn’t really matter what I looked like. It was the joy that I saw in those young, adorable siblings. I saw my oldest (who’s now 21) pushing his toddler sister (now 15) at the park. I saw my second son blowing out the candles on his birthday cake with grade school friends around. My daughter was in swim diapers frolicking around the pool.
Why was I so worried?
“Our minds are a battlefield between feeling and fact…We can either choose to allow our feelings to condemn us or we can allow them to propel us to continual dependence on God’s power and grace.” — Mothering From Scratch
Maybe the past isn’t what I percieve it to be? Maybe my memories of the past are somewhat wrong? What if they could be silenced?
In the time that it took for that roll of film to be developed, God has taken me on such a journey. I have another child, a less stressful life and kids that are still smiling. I’ll take it. I’m grateful for the memories that we have created.
I am more dependent on God now. Those times of overwhelming motherhood solidified the need of Him in my life. He used those times for good. For better. For always.
What do you think of when you see pictures of yourself earlier in your mothering journey?
How has God changed you?
What can you do today to rid yourself of some long-held mommy guilt?
Have you chosen to get closer to Him?
Would you like to learn more about how to silence the condemning voice of mommy guilt?
Check out our new book Mothering From Scratch: Finding The Best Parenting Style for You and Your Family! It’savailable now on Amazon and releases in bookstores January 20th!