A Natural Mother

“O Victoria, you’re such a natural,” an onlooker cooed as I scooped Carson into my arms.

While I appreciated the complement, I had to disagree.

Motherhood doesn’t come naturally to me. At. All.

Dragging myself out of bed at all hours of the night to nurse a waking child, not natural. Keeping calm with a grumpy-and-we-can’t-figure-out-why baby, not natural. Juggling a kid and groceries and keys at the checkout lane, not natural Cheerfully giving up my needs and desires to attend those of my daughter, not natural. Stopping my life to raise someone else’s, not natural.

I’m no natural mother.

Selfishness, self-righteousness, anger, envy, greed – now those things come very naturally. Call it sin, if I face the ugly truth. Paul’s cry is my own, “For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.” (Romans 7:15)

To be honest with you I was pretty proud of my natural labor and birth. I felt as if I’d climbed Everest, run a marathon, and won the Nobel Peace Prize all in one day. Little did I know that labor doesn’t stop in the delivery room. Turns out I’d be laboring every day after.

The past eight months have been full of the highest highs and lowest lows of my life. Well meaning friends have softly hinted that I should consider if I suffer from postpartum depression. I was routinely tested at our midwife’s and pediatrician’s offices and passed. (Or would you say I failed the test, as in I didn’t have PPD?) Though I did self-diagnosed via WebMd, I also self-diagnosed early onset menopause – so take that for what it’s worth.

Y’all, I think motherhood is just hard. It’s a wonderful, exhilarating, painful, terrifying, awe-inspiring, discouraging, carefree, burdened, major roller coaster. Sometimes you have to throw your hands up and scream a little to make it through.

Motherhood does not come naturally. At least not for me.

I need far more “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, [and] self-control” than I can possibly manufacture myself. (Galatians 5:22-23)

Only the Lord can make a natural mama.

And slowly but surely, He’s making one out of me.

10 Comments

  1. Michelle D on September 6, 2014 at 8:18 am

    I love this Victoria! Always appreciate how you keep it real. 🙂

  2. Sara on September 6, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Your words are so beautiful, honest and real. Even when you write on a topic that doesn’t necessarily apply to me at the moment (I’m not a mama!) I can still take something away from it. Thank you for your honesty & encouragement !

    • Victoria Wilson on September 6, 2014 at 5:29 pm

      Oh Sara, that means so much! Thank you 🙂 I always pray that these posts will be helpful to a wider range of people. I know my head has been in mommyhood and babies for a while, but the lessons are SO applicable to all! Thanks for reading!!!

  3. Julie Oxendine on September 6, 2014 at 9:40 am

    The first year is sometimes the survival year for parents. Wonderful take on “natural” at being a mom.

    • Victoria Wilson on September 6, 2014 at 5:28 pm

      Thanks Julie 🙂 I’ve often said this feels so much like sheer survival. Learning to see the beauty in it being a season of grace, too.

  4. Sarah M on September 6, 2014 at 10:58 am

    So good…I didn’t find motherhood especially ‘natural’ either…if at all. I wondered about it because I had worked with kids for years, loved my job, and excellent at it. There is just nothing that can compare to the realness of being needed 24/7. The first baby, the first year, is the hardest!
    Sarah M

    • Victoria Wilson on September 6, 2014 at 5:27 pm

      I believe you. I truly do. Thank you so much for always speaking life into my mommy journey! You really are very encouraging. I’m not saying that to be cheesy, promise!

  5. Ted O Easter. Jr on September 7, 2014 at 7:20 am

    Great post Victoria! After observing my mother for nearly five decades and your mother for almost two and a half it makes me think Genesis 3:16 ” To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children…” has more to do with raising children then just the birthing of babies. Only by God’s Amazing Grace can one become a Godly mom.

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