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May 18, 2022 10:00 pm
Is motherhood stripping you clean? On FamilyLife Today, Dave & Ann Wilson host author Liz Wann--who knows the pain of reaching limits. Here's how being a mom both tears us down & rebuilds us like Jesus.
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The hardest years of a mom life Randy go.
You're asking me I'm not a mom lived with me the hardest years. I'd say from birth to age 25, kidding welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue relationships that matter most time and Wilson and Dave Wilson and you can find us if we live today.com or on our family life, family life, you're the expert is the dad from birth to age 3 or maybe four diapers written by me personally. Nursing it just like such a change and a culture shock yes to get used to that and to kinda settle into that role of being mom with heart and your exhausted like our kids didn't sleep well probably my fault and I was exhausted all the time. I was disappointed in myself as a mom and are married because they are disappointed in me and I often heard I got to live life because I'm at work and I'm having lunch with people you like Winslow so my lunch with an adult. Yeah, you thought my life was so easy and I have talked to a lot of moms to now that we have adult kids. That's not an easy phase, either because now we have no control. So I would talk about the solar talking about this today because we have Liz Juan with us in the studio. Liz welcome to family life today. I think yeah I'm excited to have you with that. You've written a book called the end of me which every man that just heard that title just like the enemy and subtitle is finding resurrection life in the daily sacrifices of motherhood and it really does kind of describe where were going today but Liz's wife. She lives in Philly with her three kids older kids 973, two boys and a daughter. 973 so you've lived through in our living through it. We just talked about exactly what the enemy is all about. Yes it is, yes, especially the little years I've heard moms of teenagers can still relate yes and talk, but you know when you became a mom was a super hard on me. Was it a surprise. Yes definitely even just the birth situation. I had all these ideas and my hat is like my plan birth plan, all in play. I had no idea what really happened was bland, though it started with the reality of childbirth. Yes, that first okay like how I wanted to be here when I imagine I mean I did have a slightly traumatic birth were just went so so long and pushing delivery for an hour and 1/2, so there was a little bit of trauma in there as well. My son to be taken to the NICU.
So right off the bat because that happened with me as well. You start out with trauma and you start out with fear. You haven't even met this baby your birthing them and already I remember thinking I love this baby already.
I haven't even met him.
And yet, I'm so afraid for him already.
Yeah now that's dramatic as a mom. Yes, definitely. Yeah even know was going home.
I'd I remember having feelings of this isn't what I expected. Either you know like it's just constant crying in the middle of the night even was feeding him he still want to go back to sleep like this is not what I expected.
This just constant nonstop just like giving up of myself and letting myself down and even expected my feelings to be different. You know my hormones just were out of whack and I had some depression did not expect that no one had warned me about that is really being surprised by that. Just assuming like as a mother you always have these warm nurturing feelings you know and to just feel like the opposite of that just was very shocking to me even shared how it took you a while for feelings to really come you say felt a little bit numb. Even yeah a little disconnected like I remember when he was in the NICU, wanting to go to him like this, instinctive, he's my child.
I love and want to go to him. But even getting back home to spend a little disconnected. I heard about when the baby comes out. But is this instant bond that you feel and I did have out my other two when the first. I think because of what happened with the labor and delivery being taken to the NICU and just normally happen. So it hearing stories like that that is my expectation to have that like something was wrong. Maybe you know what wrong with me. I think that's it. I just nailed it UN into something's wrong but maybe something's wrong with me yeah you think a lot of moms can face that yeah Jeff I like, failure, or not good enough mom just realizing that your hormones at least with that situation.
You know that's just your body and it's not all happiness all the time in parenting and motherhood exact really hard. So what did you do with it. That feeling of you know I feel of the test. I feel something is wrong with me with the baby number one. How did you deal me. I just remember talking to people about it help to not keeping it to myself and telling people like family and my husband and friends like this is how I feel. I think that helped even telling God. This is how I feel. I remember the middle of the night just going so spent like rocking my son to sleep but get out my phone and play hymns for him, but also for me and read my Bible on my phone. I just never praying like Lord I'm just so needy. Never felt before, like please just help me and you know meet me here. You even say you were to you thought you were that wasn't who I thought I was and I remember having that exact same thought like I'm way more impatient or I'm way more hard on myself than I thought that I would be thinking I can get this baby to go to sleep, especially today on any kind of social media platform you're saying every mother in the world has gotten her child to sleep through the night. You know, at two months old and you're still up every two hours, you think what is wrong with me and so is mom's.
I think we can all go into this place.
I remember thinking I have never been so angry in my entire life. I didn't think this was even inside of me and so I would blame Dave for that I bring my kids for that. I blame the circumstances for that yet.
I feel like God was trying to speak to me through some of those insecurities have you felt that definitely what is that look like for you when you say like I don't even you didn't even recognize who you were, yeah, I meant every patient is a big one. I talked a lot of moms I feel the same way I was so surprised I was nice to think I'm in a very patient person are only have an anger problem and then yeah, having children like okay angry and impatient.
This is surprising how much it can be like that you know that totally relate to the thing that this is not who I thought I was and it just kinda comes out of you.
That doesn't go away you think was going to go away in a week or maybe a day at the mostly couple weeks but with a child again. I'm just the dead here listening to mom talk about but that's one of our things about it right. It just keeps then they done sleep. The next night the next night. How do you deal when it's it is in a day or week. It's months records on other matters went on for let's just say while it can be years yeah because even after the sleeping stuff that's behavior issues as are toddlers and get older and then it's another thing that you can be impatient with. So when I start hitting each other and yeah why Natalie I got SSI go to mom's and hear what you say to the guys what you say to us husbands what we do, how do we help. Oh, when were sad and mad when were watching our wives go through this because I watched and go through this and she goes from my wife whose amazing and now were both thank you know to you were so excited to have her firstborn and it's like you what you just said Liz it's like wow this is a way we thought ends up in the queue.
Then when we do get him home is just hard is not sleeping and so in some ways, and again I can't say I'm speaking for every husband, but it's in some ways our wonderful life and wife went to I lost her and she sort of lost herself because she struggling apart from me and now were struggling as new parents. In some ways is a God. I am feel like this is my fault and I also like not help. So what would you say I got to wives here to mom's will. We say to us guys.
How do we help we do. I think the first thing is to listen yet is the most important thing is to draw your wife out and find out what's going on with her and just be a listening ear and saying you know I understand.
I know it has to be hard and being open to the fact that different facets of her and listening is the most important thing so you're saying listen to and probably not doing what I did like okay, problem solving, or saying how long you think you'll feel like I was open for the moon. You told me that one time you think you'll be like the death of her head yes. So listen that's huge. And again you say listen, you mean listen, I mean like, don't fix it. Don't so empathize hard yeah and then what questions and to understand more of what she's going through. Yeah, I think to be in it with us not only listening but like serving. What can I do how can I help tonight. You want me to get dinner tonight let me pick up dinner tonight and it takes some of that burden off of us because I think we feel like is moms we need to do everything and is working moms go back to work there feeling like there feeling everyone, and so just to encourage them of saying I see what you're doing. This is gonna be really hard and then give her that space to just talk or to vent without the fixing part I think is huge Liz. I love the ease John 12 and that verse says truly is Jesus speaking, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone, but if it dies, it bears much fruit. What is that verse have to do with motherhood.
Yeah Lisa my experience thing most moms experience. There's this daily dying that you feel like this is happening and that like that grain of wheat going and being buried in it does have this feeling of your dying to yourself you know when you're putting your self in the ground here it's bearing fruit in the fact that you're going to Christ and he's redeeming that he's redeeming that destiny is raising it up to new life in him and in that can just look like different no fruit good fruit coming out my children. I feel like you and I said I'm impatient. Dave definitely God has used them to build more patients in me the death of that has produced good fruit in my heart resurrection from long did it take for either one of you to say. Getting to the point where I'm getting that perspective journey to get to the place where you're able to say what again said earlier, you get to a place where you find a Jesus is right here in these developing me as a mom how long it take to get there.
I don't know if I can give date as much of just saying.
I can remember crying out to him and Liz that is that I've been reading what you've written. You did the same thing.
I think that the great space and a great place for every mom to get to where Jesus I can't do this and I need you, and even in those times where your nursing a baby in the middle the night or you're feeding a child or up with that sick child. I know it's really easy now for moms just be scrolling on their phones. You feeding babies, but there's something about the stillness of the night or being alone of connecting with God for me became this incredibly holy time of me venting and telling Jesus all my fears, my hopes, my dreams, my disappointment in myself and my need for him. It became like a church service in the middle the night. I don't think I could've done it without that. But it was that dying piece of me like I feel like I've lost the person I used to be and I think that there's a part of him that was saying and I have so much more for you because I love you and I'm changing you, and I felt like it was torture and I called the desert I'm in here in the desert Jesus and you see me, I'm all alone and having water and he says I am your bladder you know I'll bring you springs of living water. Talk about that for you because you went to a little bit like in the middle the night you would go there you play hands for me the process was an out if this is how God is using motherhood to help me to die myself to die to sin and develop good fruit in me. I can either fight that or I can submit to it. So I think it was even realizing that I can submit to this and I can submit to the tool of sanctification through motherhood and what God is how he's using it to work these things in me. I think it was kind of an issue of do I fight it or do I submit to it. How do you submit to it. What's that look like yeah let's get on for me it was more just seeing it ending is the key to see okay I have an issue here. I'm impatient, some just don't see it as Connor always reacting instead to stop and think and say it and then to bring it to the Lord and confess it to him and just say I need help and just keep doing that, I've noticed that I mean I'm still impatient, but I have noticed some growth, you know I'm like okay I was little more patient.
There than what I think what it used to be.
A few years ago say I think just seeing it owning it and confessing it and asking for help staying here and you talk it's like I'm a dad, but it's the same thing that I have the come to the end of me. Yeah, the title of your book, which is that death, but there's also some in all of us that says I want to die. So last thing you know it's like were supposed embrace our death.
I don't want to, and were doing it as a sacrifice unto the Lord for our child. But how do you embrace that concept of getting to the end of me. I mean, it's a beautiful book entitled what it's like Donato anything but the end of me.
You know, maybe three quarters there, but I'm not going all the way to the end of me. But that's sort of the concept right. That's what God wants and that's what motherhood did for you. Yes, I think, again, to go back to what I was like oh I thought of myself before motherhood was.
I thought I was a pretty strong person and I think the years went on like a whole can cut a week we and I'm very very human. You now just to even just be sin, but just I'm I'm human like I'm I'm limited I'm finite. I'm not God I'm not all-powerful. I'm not in control. I think I came to a head with that pretty early on, like just reckoning with my humanity of just like you even said we want to do it all week like we have to do it all and out and said just even realizing like I can't do it all. I need to lay it down and realize that that's not what I'm called to I'm limited and fine.
I am doing and to embrace that I think coming to the end of myself as just embracing my humanity in my weakness and my need for the Lord and that actually is a the place that he wants us to come to that. He's designed for us to because that's how he made us him that's beautiful and I think I was fighting it for so long. When I now understand that's one of the greatest gifts God gave me because I would've thought hey I'm a hard worker I can get this I can get this stuff done. I'm gonna nail this thing I came to the point that I thought I got nothing.
I've got nothing left. I've nothing to offer and I know that sounds like a bad place but when I got to that place. That's when I said but Jesus you are all things and you not surprised where I am in you can take this kind of that death I live my life down before you like Romans 12 one into as a living sacrifice that daily surrender that and something beautiful result of our dependence on him and I said that a lot of times with moms and dads to their such a self-sacrifice.
I think we moms. We never lay it down where men may be a little bit more compartmentalized with it that we moms carried continually and so there's a beauty to being able to let Jesus carry it for us. That lays down our will. Our pride all the arrogance I had so much arrogant thinking thinking to be amazing like I'm horrible and so there is a beautiful part of that talk about this because you mention it quite often in your book the idea of it was in the verse assured when you die. New life springs. We talk about resurrection life of Christ being real to you as a mom, but it doesn't come until you get to the end of May. So what's the hope in the resurrection life house that function you're listening to David and Wilson with his one on family life today to hear her response in just a minute, but first, as you can imagine. We had to make some tough choices again this year, as many of us had.
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Right now, back to David and with Liz Juan and how the hope of Christ's resurrection really is good news for our day-to-day life.
What's the hope in the resurrection life house that function just looking to him as your source and your strength and Polly even talks about Jesus first a lot in the book to boasting your weaknesses and just even doing that is that work of resurrection life in your heart of come to the place for you can even boast in your weaknesses and not having all those plates spinning and thinking you've got it all going together, but realizing you can drop some of those plates and everything to be okay and it's it's an active humility even to say I can't do it all. I can have all those plates spinning and that's okay.still in control and it's humility.
You know, one of the greatest Christian virtues as humility. So that's definitely the resurrection life in your heart. I'm thinking of all the moms listening, no matter how old your kids are whether their babies whether there teenagers whether they are grown and gone and I think we as moms carry this weight of wanting our kids to be happy, wanting them to know Jesus and we carry it all the time. I know even with my kids grown. I still wake up in the middle the night worried like what if this happens I don't know you don't wake up and I pray for them, but there's something like I would encourage you to know that Jesus loves you. He knows your kids he sees you as a woman and he's wanting to walk beside you, love you, comfort you, encourage you, and I think the closer we draw to him the more he changes that I think every mom needs to hear that because that's like you said you both never let go of your beautiful thing. But you need to know Jesus as that's David and Wilson with Liz Juan on family life. You can get her book the end of email@example.com or by calling 1-800-358-6329 that's one 800 F as in family L as in life and in the word today. If you know of anyone who needs to hear today's message you could share from where ever you get your podcast and while you're there to really help get the word out about family life to rate and review us tomorrow. Dave and Ann will be talking again with Liz Juan about how sometimes when your new mom all you want is a break and some rest. But how that can make you for wanting to get away from your baby is coming up tomorrow. We hope you can join us on behalf of David and Wilson. I'm shall be back next time for another edition of family life like today is a production of accrued Street helping you pursue the relationship