Extensions of Myself

Left Picture: Baby girl clothes
I found FREE from a neighbor’s
stoop! My favorites…the shoes
2 knit cardigans.

One of my passions in life, (and thus a topic I write about often), has morphed into encouraging younger stay-at-home moms such as myself; letting them know that though our culture and the lies it spins can at times feel defeating, they are just that much of the time…lies. From one month post-college graduation until now and into the future, much of my identity has and will be founded on my calling as a mom. The official titles I’ve held in my adult life are wife and “mama” and I love these titles as they are the ones I desired most from the time I was young and to be blessed with a husband who is not ashamed of my choice to be a home-maker is an added bonus I can not take for granted!

Still, there are the values of society tugging at my mind sometimes. The fear I am lacking important experiences, am inadequate for the task because of my under thirty-five status or frankly, much too simple-minded to think that being mommy is the bee’s knees! For example, take this article from Eliza magazine entitled, “When Baby is the New Black.” The author writes:

“Because offspring can be so monumental in the definition of a mother’s self-identity, women who began their families young often attribute the development of their then-nascent identities to their experience with their children.

Conversely , a woman who bears her first child in her mid-thirties or later has had more time for career and personal development. She is likely more grounded in her self-identity due to the simple fact that she has had more time to do so. She has either experienced her full career path before rearing children, or can continue what she has already built up. She is often wiser, more patient, more experienced.”

Notice being a good mother is knowing yourself more, having the experience of a full career, self-identity. Are any of these points ultimately important to God? If He wills you have these things more than someone else before having children, great, but it is amazing that society honestly believes these take away from the value of a young, “less experienced” mom. And having more than less time to grow in self-awareness can be a disadvantage as it means a dying to oneself once children come along may well be that much more difficult and painful. Interestingly, No where is self-sacrifice mentioned in the article or a nod to the fact that a young mom has much wisdom gleaned from experience to give to a woman just having her first child in her late thirties.

It is easy to get wrapped up in fears sometimes that perhaps I may find myself at some point, when our children are older, wishing I had various outside career experiences under my belt in order to easily find work outside the home. But I simply have to trust God’s plans for my life. He ordained that I dive right into motherhood at an early age…he has His plans for each of His children and as mothers, he created us with the desire to passionately invest in our little ones. This takes on different forms in our culture but according to how I see it, a true investing is a full investing. No half ways, fewer regrets.

And quite honestly, how can I look at my son or feel my daughter and not believe this calling before me is perhaps becoming the road less popular yet a path worth taking?:)

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6 Responses to Extensions of Myself

  1. Mrs. Miller says:

    Speaking as a woman who got a graduate degree and worked outside the home before having a child, NOTHING quite prepares you to have a baby! :-) Besides, young moms have the edge because they have the energy to keep up with their children! Oh – I LOVE those baby girl shoes!! AH!! So CUTE!!!

  2. Andria says:

    I love your posts regarding young motherhood for SAHM’s. I didn’t establish a career either before getting married (at 21) and having kids (at 26) and I also struggle with feelings of – “should I do more?” But I always come back to the comfort I find in knowing this is God’s calling for me. It helps so much to have a husband who appreciates that God has blessed him with a wife to take care of the home and children. There is no greater happiness than dedicating myself to my family! We may not see the fruits of our work everyday, but on the days that they are displayed – how BIG they are!!!I love the pictures of Micah – he is soooo big and just precious!

  3. Rick Rose says:

    Exactly. I think its really funny how those magazines make late 30s having their first child seem so full of wisdom as they have their FIRST child and disregard the late 30 year old with several children and 15 years of experience. But then again, wisdom when it comes to children these days means “I have enough money to pay someone else to raise my kids so I don’t actually have to deal with them.” What if I paid someone else to take my wife out on date nights, handle all the flowers, gifts, etc.

  4. Anonymous says:

    susanna-I have been thinking today about the focus you are thinking about for your blog: and I think you are finding it all on your own as you live and write about NYC. Perhaps a narrowing focus you are exploring is: what it means to embrace motherhood fully, traditionally, in the midst of urban feminism????You are doing wonderfully, and your thoughts will continue to be useful as you relate back to the news, editorials, etc. use real-life examples and you will reach Moms….Love you,Maryanne

  5. Grace says:

    I love those pictures of Micah…and Ellie’s clothes…so cute.

  6. Susanna Rose says:

    Bethany-I’ve loved discussing matters on this topic with you over the last few months and getting your thoughts!Andria-Thanks for letting me know you enjoy these posts on young motherhood! You are an inspiration to me as you fulfill your role as a young SAHM with so much joy, thankfulness and enthusiasm!Maryanne-Thanks for the encouragement…I appreciate the fact that you have taken the time over the last few days to think about the questions I asked you regarding suggestions in possible blog direction, etc!

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