Musings on Motherhood

Bringing a child into the world is an incredible event. 

But as wonderful as being a new mom is, it can also be a very challenging time with its fair share of ups and downs. Here, three ladies talk about their journey through recently having a child and what they have done that has helped them enjoy this season of life even more.

Kayla Jones kissing her baby boy Link
Kayla and Link

Kayla Jones

“On November 15th, we welcomed our third sweet baby boy into our family. We now have an almost-4-year-old, a 2-year-old, and a newborn. But of course, with every new baby, there are new routines and challenges to face. I started feeling overwhelmed with three young children. I was also finding myself crying more than usual. One thing that helped me and continues to help me is the community I have surrounded myself with. Of course, my husband has been absolutely incredible and supportive, but my community has also really lifted me up – specifically my brothers and sisters in Christ. For more than two months, we had meals delivered. I constantly had friends checking in on me and sending me prayers. Several friends offered to watch the boys. This was all very helpful as we don’t have much family here in Chattanooga. My advice to new mothers is to not do this alone – find yourself a good community to help you in challenging times.”

Carolyn West with her baby boy Gideon
Carolyn and Gideon

Carolyn West

“One thing new parents in this generation are not lacking is advice. We get it everywhere, from Google to the cashiers at the grocery stores. As a type-A, first-time parent, advice overload was one of my biggest challenges. I realized that I can rigidly follow all the schedules and buy all the sensory toys to help him with his milestones, but he will get there when he is ready. Now, my favorite mantras are ‘This too shall pass’ and ‘Let feelings be.’ We can help, teach, and assist them as much as we loving parents want to, but always remember to give grace for the learning curve. It’s okay that babies have bad days, too. Growing is hard stuff – nothing a little cuddling and rocking can’t help.”

Kelli Boitnott with her baby boy Xavier
Kelli and Xavier

Kelli Boitnott

“I knew my life would change dramatically when I became a mom, and it has. It’s both wonderful and hard. Right now, I don’t have the independence to travel or go on challenging hikes or even to drink my coffee while it is still hot. But what is lost in autonomy is made up for in gummy smiles, precious giggles, and having a front-row seat to this amazing show of human development. I remind myself to appreciate each season as it comes. My son won’t always need me like this, but right now he does, and I’m thankful I can be present for it. Rather than focusing on what I can’t do right now, I try to remind myself to focus on all the special opportunities I do have. This child is a marvel! And being his parent is a whole new kind of adventure.”

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