Nobody tells you how hard it is to be a parent

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by Kelly Chen

When you’re pregnant, most people will say how much fun you’ll have, how wonderful it is to be a mom, and how precious it is to have a baby. Don’t get me wrong, three kids later, I totally agree (at least part of the time). But most people won’t tell you how hard it is, especially in those first few weeks of your child’s life.  Your baby isn’t sleeping because you still haven’t gotten the hang of nursing, so she’s hungry and crying and you’re crying because your baby isn’t sleeping so you aren’t sleeping either.

It was over seven years ago that I experienced those crying, sleepless nights.  Now I’m blessed that my kids are good eaters and sleep through the night! As I reflect on the years that I’ve been a mom, I know that one of the biggest supports that God has given me to help me through this season has been STEMS (formerly MOPS). 

I am so thankful for the community that God had given me through this ministry to young moms. Fellow moms called or emailed after I had given birth to see how I was doing and

offered advice and prayers. Several moms brought us meals so I didn’t have to worry about cooking as I was getting used to caring for my newborn. I was able to attend the Friday morning meetings where I could drop my child off with loving caregivers, and then receive godly insight and encouragement from various speakers, fellow moms and mentor moms. 

I’ve received so much wisdom in how to train up my children in godly ways, to love and respect my husband, and to seek the Lord with all my heart in the midst of parenting little ones. I’ve become part of a community of moms who support and pray for one another as we face similar challenges with our children and endure difficulties in our marriages and families. Together we are learning to trust more every day that our lives and our kids’ lives are not in our hands, but ultimately in the Lord’s. 

Parenting is not easy, and it’s not going to get easier any time soon, but I’m thankful that I have other moms with me on this journey!