In a comment a few days ago, Rose said that I seem to be a natural when it comes to motherhood. Rose, I do often wish it was so. :o) If motherhood and child-rearing came naturally to me, there'd be a lot less difficulty, and sometimes frustration and even feeling as though I'm at the end of my rope - but also a lot less growth as a person and woman, wife and mother, and a lot less reliance on the Almighty, Who alone has all the answers.
I sometimes hear people say they will not get married until they feel perfectly situated for marriage, or that they choose not to have children because they aren't the "maternal" type. I can only speak for myself, and I can tell that I'm not what you'd call the naturally maternal type. I grew up as a lonely child, without younger siblings or cousins to care for, perhaps this has something to do with it. Also, I'm not a very enthusiastic talker, and verbal communication is so very important when taking care of little ones (talking about the daily activities, telling songs and stories, etc). Those are just two examples of the many reasons why I can't call myself a natural when it comes to motherhood. Child-rearing is not natural for me in the sense of being easy, but it is something I'm working on incorporating into my nature, to grow and change and become the mother G-d intended me to become, by placing children in my arms and instructing me to raise them.
He, the Almighty G-d, places us in situations which are good for us, in the way that they are making us stretch ourselves and grow. Without stretching - which is at times painful - there would be no growth. I believe one can never be fully "prepared" for those enormous changes in our life which come with marriage and motherhood. In a way, we are not ready. It is humbling. It is, at times, frightening. Sometimes we feel inadequate in regard to doing what we are supposed to do.
And that is when we come to our Father. It is a part of His plan, too. If things always went smoothly, we wouldn't learn humility, we wouldn't see how truly needy we are of Him, and how He is the only one who can meet our needs, which are so great. Daily, I ask for help to become the wife and mother my family needs. Daily, I ask Him to teach me, guide me, change me.
And even though I'm sometimes embarrassed at how humble my efforts may seem, how seemingly little might have been accomplished compared to what I planned, I know He is ever and always there, waiting for my tears and my failures and my needs. As of myself, I will never be "successful". But with His help, I make it through every day.
He loves us, and longs for our sincere prayer and for us turning towards Him. I once read a lesson asking the question, why did so many great women of the Bible - like our mothers Sarah and Rachel, and Hannah, mother of Shemuel the prophet - walked for many long years down the bitter path of childlessness? And the answer is, that G-d allowed them to grow in that particular way, and from their grief blossomed the beautiful flowers of sincere tearful prayer to the Lord, and complete reliance on Him, which was what He desired.
Someone said motherhood is the hardest job you'll ever love. It's true. It isn't easy, but I am so blessed to be a mother. I sometimes pinch myself, hardly believing that I was so lucky to be chosen to be the mother of my wonderful children. I'm so excited to think that my journey as a mother is yet just beginning to unfold, that there's a promise of many years ahead to see my children grow. So beautiful. My husband and I are not alone, never - there is a good great Father and King guiding us. In Him we trust.