I have a lot of emotion as my oldest son turns 10 on March 21. Looking back, I thought I had an idea of what motherhood would look like. I thought I would do things a certain way and my child would naturally follow suit. All these hopes, desires, and dreams I have had for him and for myself. Some have been squashed, some reborn into something more significant, some of which God has yet to reveal to me.
When I was pregnant with Joah, I would rub my giant belly, praying and dreaming he would be an energetic and playful boy. It wasn't long before I realized the Lord had hugely answered my prayer! Little Joah operated on full steam 24 hours a day, seven days a week! So much, in fact, it's made his young life journey difficult at times. Over the years, the term ADHD has occasionally been used from his caregivers. We've not officially tested Joah, but we did recognize his struggle to focus coupled with high energy. In western medicine, the popular route is to prescribe medication, which works well for many families. It has long been my desire to raise my children using a natural, holistic approach to health whenever possible. Based on this, medicating Joah was not an option we wished to explore. With much prayer, consideration, and seeking other avenues, we began moving forward in a way that felt right for us.
For the last five years, Joah has had a full range of holistic treatments to help balance his brain and body. We follow a specific diet of gluten/dairy free, and low sugar. He takes about 10 supplements daily, uses essential oils daily, practices yoga and breathing exercises, utilizes play therapist, does Brain Balancing (SOI- Sensory output integration), chiropractics, sees a naturopath, daily prayer and meditation on scripture. Not all of this happens all at once, and many treatments are now completed or only as needed. As you can imagine, this approach has been tediously time consuming and extremely costly as it isn't covered by insurance. The progress has been slow but steady and at times frustrating because it's not a quick fix. Despite all this, God gave us the best possible path to follow Joah's health! In the last 7 months, we can see he has turned a corner and had tremendous growth mentally, socially, emotionally and behaviorally. We praise the Lord for giving us the strength, wisdom, and energy to persevere, as well as providing us with amazing holistic health providers.
So, as we celebrate our Joah bear turning 10, I overflow with joy for the young man my son is becoming! He is noticeably different, in all the right ways. He loves being outdoors and riding his bike. He enjoys going to school and has some precious, sweet friends. He's discovered music and began playing the viola, recorder, with drum lessons next! He is a great little basketball player and takes golf lessons so we can play as a family. He is sensitive in nature, has a unique sense of humor (much like mine), is kind, and smart. If anything is classified as adventuresome or thrilling, he wants to do it! He likes climbing (rocks, trees, buildings), rope swings, snow skiing, go karts, and water sports. In the home, I am teaching him to be self-sufficient by cooking, doing his own laundry, cleaning various parts of the house and taking out the trash. I have enjoyed bringing Joah into my professional work. To date, we've done two magazine publications together, two appearances on TV, and he has been my co-host on stage speaking to our church congregation on Mother's Day. It is not uncommon for one of his teachers to tell me "Joah is a really happy kid." As a mother, I couldn't ask for more than for my son to be happy and to know God. Joah truly loves life!
I have come to accept that motherhood is a refining process for my soul. It is one-way God sanctifies me to be more like Jesus. It hasn't looked like what I had initially hoped for, but I wouldn't change a thing. I am confident the highest calling at this life stage is to shepherd my two boys as they grow into men.
Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to be Joah's mama, I am enjoying this faith walk alongside my firstborn boy. Proverbs 22:6
Your Insightful Life
No matter what age our children are, there may be hardship and challenge. Acknowledge what you are struggling with today regarding your son or daughter and take it to prayer. God knows and cares about your situation and will provide clear direction if you ask him for it.
Lord Jesus, thank you for blessing me with my child(ren). I pray for them to know you in a profound way and for them to be successful in your eyes. Help me to parent them well, no matter what stage of life they are in. In Jesus name, Amen!