Life has a funny way of working out sometimes.
Have you ever heard the song, “Unanswered Prayers,” by Garth Brooks? It’s about a man who takes his wife back to his hometown, and they run into his high school sweetheart. The man reminisces about asking God to make the high school sweetheart his wife, but he ends up marrying this other woman instead. In hindsight, he realizes it was a blessing that God did not answer his original prayer, even though he couldn’t understand why at the time.
Growing up, I just knew that when I became a mom, I was going to have two boys and a girl. For years, I operated under the assumption that God would agree, my plan would come to fruition, and I would get everything I ever wanted. I prayed frequently that God would make me a mom and that I would have two boys and a girl (though I never specified in what order).
I wanted boys because I was a tomboy growing up. I hated wearing “girly” clothes, I loved playing tackle football, and I reveled in making mud pies in the back yard. I also grew up around mostly boys: I had a brother, eight boy cousins, my favorite kids to babysit were boys, and a lot of my friends in school were boys. I just related to boys better and knew I wouldn’t be any good at raising girls. But I was OK with the prospect of one girl, because I thought it would be so sweet for her to have brothers to look out for her and protect her.
I was very specific with my plans.
And Then I Became a Mom…
In 2005, I became a mom for the first time to a beautiful baby girl. She wasn’t the boy I had always wanted, but she was perfect. Born four-and-a-half weeks early, we were blessed that there were no major complications with either her or me. I began to think that maybe … just maybe … I could handle having a daughter.
In 2007, I gave birth to another girl. Wait a second, God. This wasn’t the plan. I was supposed to have a boy. I didn’t plan for another girl. I am ashamed to admit that I was a little bit upset that I was given two daughters. I mean, I love my girls very much, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything. But, at the time, I couldn’t understand why my prayer for a little boy wasn’t being answered, and I was disappointed.
In 2010, I gave birth to our third daughter. By this time, my husband and I were convinced that he carried a total of zero Y chromosomes. Because I already had five years under my belt as a girl mom, I wasn’t really upset anymore. I didn’t really know boys any longer. All I knew as a mom was the color pink and Barbies and baby dolls and dresses. My boy dreams slowly started to fade away, because my girls had become everything I never knew I wanted or needed.
By the time 2012 rolled around, and we were surprised with a fourth pregnancy, I almost didn’t want to go to the gender reveal sonogram. We already knew it was another girl. In fact, when we arrived, my husband immediately told the technician, “It’s a girl, so there’s no need to keep us in suspense.” She thought we were joking.
In November that year, our fourth daughter completed our family.
Hindsight Is a Wonderful Thing
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine being a girl mom four times over. I didn’t want girls. I didn’t think I would be any good at raising girls. I was a rough and tumble tomboy who hated nail polish and doing hair and make-up. I wanted all the boy things.
Or so I thought.
Let me say right here and now, God knows what He’s doing. It wasn’t in my plans to have daughters, but it was most definitely in His, and I’m so very thankful it was. These four ladies have changed me in a way I never thought possible. They challenge me every day to be a better person and the best mom I can be. They make me laugh incessantly. They happily oblige when I ask if anyone wants to accompany me shopping. They love sports and music. They are so stinking smart and talented. They honor and bless me every day.
I might never know why God chose me to raise four girls, but I can’t even imagine what my life would be like if I didn’t have my daughters. Something tells me life just wouldn’t be as fun. God knew I needed these four girls, even when I didn’t.
And now that they’re getting older and we’re able to do more “grown-up” things together, I really like the idea of being a girl mom. I’m going to get to go shopping for prom dresses and wedding dresses and have quality one-on-one time with my girls that I probably wouldn’t get to have if I had boys. Let’s face it: there’s just certain things girls can’t tell anyone else but their moms.
And even though my husband is severely outnumbered and swears he’s going to build his own apartment in the backyard for when they all enter teendom, I think he’s pretty happy about how our family dynamic turned out. Our girls have him wrapped around their fingers, and it has been a blessing to watch the man he has become while raising four girls.
It has also been a blessing that God did not answer my original prayer. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.
Life sure has a funny way of working out sometimes…
“Sometimes I thank God
For unanswered prayers
Remember when you’re talkin’
To the man upstairs
That just because he doesn’t answer doesn’t mean he don’t care
‘Cause some of God’s greatest gifts
Are unanswered prayers …”
Mamas, if you’re looking for more encouragement, start here:
Why Every Mom Needs to Have a Meltdown
A Little Encouragement When Motherhood is Disappointing
Every Mom Needs Her Own Highlight Reel, This Is Why
Raising Great Girls: How to Do the Job with Darlene Brock
Girls Aren’t All “Drama”—How to Raise a Strong One
Don’t miss these popular articles:
Now Is the Time to Start Living out Your Dream
A Mammogram Taught Me How Strong and Beautiful Women Are
How to Discover That Giving Can Be Free and Easy
Can You Start a Career Later in Life? Absolutely.
I Gave up Amazon and This Is What Happened
You’ll love this podcast episode from This Grit and Grace Life: How Can You Raise Great Girls? Darlene’s Daughters Tell All – 054!