4 Ways to Make Raising Three Boys “The Best”

“Being the mom to three boys is the best! The best!”

She caught me completely off guard. I was expecting either the “You have your hands full” or “Are they all yours?” comment. The palpable joy, passion, and sincerity in the voice of a stranger in a burger joint reached right inside my heart and sparked a new vision.

I found myself reflective later that night. It’s so easy to live caught up in a tangled web of raising kids. What type of education should they have? Are they eating the right foods? Do other people’s children fight this much? Or have that many food particles under the table? How much sleep is enough? And as you know, the questions go on and on. And on.

Admittedly, I somehow find myself so involved in these worries that I lose the sentiment that indeed, this parenting gig, is the best. Being a mom was no given, and I am blessed beyond measure. So I cleaned the kitchen and thought about what might make raising three boys “the best.” And I sat down and thought again about what might make raising three boys “the best.” And as it turns out, I don’t think it’s so much about raising three boys. It’s looking into your heart and then beyond the web of parental worries and into the hearts of your children — boys, girls, boys and girls. It’s creating a personal checklist to dig for beauty and intentionally seek to live in “the best.”

And when our boys are grown, return from college, and pause their social lives for a burger with dear old mom, I hope I can stare with sweet nostalgia at a young family and pass on, mom to mom, the same inspiration I found one Sunday evening when a stranger reached out and reminded me just how beautiful this life is.

Raising Boys - Featured

Open My Hands and Invest

Or move my feet, wiggle my toes, jump in. You see where I’m going here. I’m not going to put on rose-colored glasses and forget that I put on a TV show {or four} and cleaned the kitchen, or that the two-year-old threw a fit when I turned it off. The words, “go play” have come from my mouth. I’ve spent too many  minutes on an iPhone. But I do know that I want to fondly remember airplane races around the house and water gun blasts on a summer’s afternoon. I want to know that we sang and danced, and cooked together and ate ice cream, and shared giggles and read books. And the “hard” stuff, the active stuff. We fought villains at the park, played hide and seek, and crawled in and out of homemade forts. Raising kids is tiring, but that won’t be my excuse for missing the moments.

Open My Heart and Pray

The stresses of parenting don’t have to exist in such magnitude. These boys are mine to borrow, but they belong to a bigger Father, one whose powers far surpass mine. And my power is in turning over their lives to Him, relinquishing control, and trusting patiently that I’ve been graced with the strength and wisdom to raise three boys on Earth.  When I master that, oh imagine the peace!

Thrive and Grow

These are years of knowing my strengths and believing in them while identifying weakness and giving them room to grow. We are all different types of moms who share some similarities. Social media is making us quite proficient at second guessing ourselves. When I quiet those voices of insecurity and instead spend time and energy refining myself and embracing the mom I was created to be, I can live more freely as the best version of myself. And in breathing in that way of life, I can send it right back out to my family.

Live Outside the Margins and Fill the Page

When I wrote class notes and even rough drafts in high school {dating myself here}, I wrote from one side of the page to the other, rebelling against those red margins hoping to keep my thoughts in order. I just loved the way a piece of notebook paper looked when completely full. I want to live that way. Our day to day involves my focus shifting from boy to boy in providing food, changing diapers, and cleaning messes. That’s a given as a stay-at-home mom of three boys under five. But I’ve been more conscious lately of how my attention shifts in our downtime and in our play time. I smile when I notice myself supervising Legos with one hand while playing peek-a-boo in between instruction steps. And no sooner have we completed that Lego airplane, and I’m working on a firetruck puzzle with the two-year-old. It’s a dance, really. And I’m starting to allow myself to really enjoy the steps, the choreographed and the freestyle. That dance is writing our story, across the page, the entire page, and as exhausting as it can be to move that pencil, the completed project is a work that I will look back upon as the best.

Our dance will become less playing on the floor and more chauffeuring from practice to practice. My worries will become less “Will they ever use the toilet” and more “God, please let them make good choices while out with friends.”  Being a mom to three boys is my calling.  I’m the first woman in their lives — not necessarily a daunting challenge, but a beautiful privilege. In my mission to raise three little men of God, I become a step closer to who I’m created to be. That’s the beauty of it. And it’s the best. 

11 Responses to 4 Ways to Make Raising Three Boys “The Best”

  1. Bonni June 27, 2015 at 9:42 am #

    thank you for this, spoke to my heart. Airplane races….

    Bonni (mother of 3 boys)

    • Jenn July 7, 2015 at 2:31 pm #

      As my oldest grows out of his vehicle phase I think I’m missing those races with him the most. Luckily there are two younger ones to pick up the slack 😉

  2. Krystal July 7, 2015 at 9:45 am #

    Yay!! I’m welcoming my 3rd boy in October. I’ll also have 3 under 5. This makes me happy!!

    • Jenn July 7, 2015 at 2:32 pm #

      It’s a good club. A challenging one, but a good club!

  3. Catherine December 11, 2015 at 6:41 pm #

    Made me tear up, being 6mo pregnant with my 3rd boy in 5yrs. 🙂

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