The best part of being a mom is MY BIG PEOPLE.
Oh, how I love love love my bigs. (For those of you that don’t know me, I am a mother of three bigs, four mediums and one little.)
And I want to share with you WHY I love my older kids because I am sure it is not what you think it is about.
I would guess that you might think Lori Doerneman is in love with her older kids because of something they have achieved, or some great medal of honor they have won.
Maybe you think they have saved the poor in their city or started Bible studies or are teaching others to plant trees and save the earth.
Nope, nope and nope.
I am totally and crazily in love with my big people, Eric, 23, Rachel, 21 and Mitch, 20, because they have decided to
Engage in the world around them in an exceedingly authentic way.
That means they are okay being vulnerable. They get that when they share their imperfections, that others then feel safe sharing THEIR struggles.
Shame does not own a part of their life.
They are engaging with their communities in real ways.
And it is changing not only them but others.
I may or may not have spent my entire afternoon yesterday crying in deep joy over this. I felt like Mother Mary, pondering deeply at the way God works.
See, when I first started this journey of motherhood I thought if I did A, then my kids would become B.
That didn’t go according to plan.
My children are somewhat loud people, with free will and their own ideas and their own hormones and their own life goals.
I realized that my one true goal for my children is that they follow Jesus Christ wherever He should lead them.
My second goal is that they engage with the world from a place of real.
If they are sucking air, I want them to reach out to those in their corner and say, “Um, need some help here.”
If they are stuck in sin, I want them to be authentic and tell those that can help, “I can’t shake this. Help.”
I want them to know how much they are loved. I want them to know that they have worth, not because of what they do, but because of who they ARE.
I want that confidence IN THEIR HUMANITY to spill all over the place and allow real connection to occur.
If they are addressing crowds of people, I want them to share their lives with them. I want them to share from that place that knows that they are enough. They are simply enough.
Now, I won’t go into detail, but that is what is happening with all three of my oldest babies.
I tell you that, not to brag, because if you catch what I am saying, it certainly is not bragging. I mean, I am saying that my imperfect children are simply living their lives out loud.
MANY PEOPLE run from that life.
They have discovered and accepted the paradox that vulnerability is strength.
Vulnerability is courage.
And they have found out that when they share with others from that deepest place, authentic relationships are BORN.
RIGHT THERE, in that muck, the connectivity that we all crave, is born!
They know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God cannot transform that which we hide.
THAT IS WHY I CRIED ALL DAY LONG YESTERDAY. It was a good day for this mama.
That is all I want for mine, to walk and live in that space.
Now, if you have littles, you may be asking um, Lori, how do I get that?
Well, you start with YOU.
No masking. No hiding. No pretending.
If you need help because of some childhood struggle or abuse, get help. Be healed. You are worth that! It might take work and cash and effort, but you are worth the hard work.
You must be open about your weakness.
I am telling you, that’s where the freedom comes into our lives, when we OPEN up about our real. Isn’t that exciting? Because then and ONLY THEN can healing take place.
And once your own healing of all of that woundedness occurs, you will operate from this new place, a sort of “Mary Magdalen” space.
It’s not so much about being better as in The Best Mom Ever, but it’s more about being alive and receiving forgiveness and accepting that you needed help in the first place.
And then you’ll receive the gift, because being authentic about your failings and admitting your struggles in real ways (and getting help) transforms the home and the family from the inside out.
What crazy joy.
It is crazy. I didn’t expect this part of parenting. I did not. I totally expected that I would be strong and solid and that my kids would grow up to be strong and solid and my job would be done there.
What I am discovering is that as I grow, change and learn, and DISCUSS MY REAL WITH MY BIGS, they easily have the courage to grow, change and learn.
I loved these kids as toddlers. Well, sort of. Mostly. BUT NOW? OH MY STARS. Just wait, mamas of littles. Just wait. The best part of motherhood is coming. You will love it.
Thank you, Eric, Rachel and Mitchell, for having the courage to live life authentically. You are going to impact hundreds and thousands of lives simply by the way you have decided to live, move and interact in this world.
I am incredibly proud to be your mother and am excited for the five sets of eyes that are upon you. Thank you for being such imperfectly perfect role models.