The Time I Wore One Earring  

Freda Howell McMahon   |   November 7, 2016 


Last evening was a gone show. This is how it all started - we were invited to a friend's wedding. My husband left early to help out but I chose to go later in the evening. Attending a wedding as a quiet guest doesn’t top my daughter’s list of things to do and running after a boisterous one year old doesn’t top mine.

“Now, what to wear?” I had a simple yet pretty option, and another very pretty and very uncomfortable option. Tough choice… let’s go with discomfort.  I pulled out a new anarkali suit from my drawer. It had been lying untouched for a long time, much like the beetroot in my fridge. I plan to eat it, but somehow it just never seems like the right time. Anyhow, we had a winner! I figured since I was already dressing up, why not wear some make-up as well? Go all out. I couldn't remember the last time I'd spent time on make up. But as I stood by my dresser, with some foundation on my finger, I must have moved. Kirrrr….I heard my kurta rip. Oh no! I reached down to touch it, unwilling to believe it happened.... and the foundation previously on my finger was now on that spot. OH NO!

Amairah sneaked into the bathroom while I wasn’t watching. Her bath water was still in the tub - Splash, splash, splash! The front of her puffy pink and cream dress was soaked. Why had I not thrown out the water? Now I’d have to get her ready again, and get myself ready as well. This evening was not going as planned.

Just a few days ago, my sister was mentioning a book written by someone who took on the challenge of being thankful in all circumstances. He was following the Biblical teaching to be thankful in everything because that is how God desires we should love (1 Thessalonians. 5:18). The verse conveniently popped back in my head. Even though I didn’t thank God for all these unexpected happenings; I was able to accept them, remain calm, and move on.

We reached the venue and I was glad that my daughter and I were both in more comfortable clothes than originally intended. In addition to all that happened, I graced the occasion with one earring; my daughter had pulled off the other one while we were in the car, and I just wasn’t able to find it. Surprisingly, I didn't see the need to take off the one that remained.

As I've mentioned earlier in one of my posts, I'd generally classify myself as a perfectionist. Although I've not overcome the struggle, the fact that I was okay with one earring was a sign of growth. I could have taken it off, but I didn’t. It was a little crazy in a meaningful way. No surprise was going to be a mood dampener!

Unlike previous years, I’m beginning to be able to handle things not going as planned. This journey of motherhood has changed me far more than I could ever imagine. The biggest lesson has been to humbly acknowledge that I don’t have everything in control. During the earliest days of being a mother, I struggled with being able to breastfeed, and now I struggle to get her to eat as much I’d like (though as I write she’s busy eating grapes all by herself).  I’m unable to protect my baby from falling down and getting hurt. I can’t even influence her likes; she prefers cars to teddy bears.

Motherhood has come laden with surprises, and that has made me calm; what an irony! Having a child finally forced me to accept that I don’t have control over what happens. But, it also taught me that God has control over everything. He’s not taken aback when Amairah has a cough that just refuses to go away.  You don't see God batting an eye lid when my plans come crumbling down. He doesn't worry over my daughter's weight gain. Much to my heart’s delight, He’s the One holding it all together behind the scenes.

Becoming a mother has given me an all new understanding of God's love. I know I’d always, always, always have my daughter’s best interest at heart, and I delight in knowing that God loves me a lot more! A loving God is helping me handle unexpected events with thankfulness, and the same is possible for you.

What surprises are currently springing on you? Do you like them? Remember, the unchanging God can help you accept change; pleasant and unpleasant.

Photo Credit : Unsplash

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Freda Howell McMahon

Freda McMahon lives in a little Goan village with her husband and two daughters. She is a counsellor by profession, a homeschooling mom, and in constant need of God’s grace. Dark chocolate with sea salt, good conversation and solitude are a few of her favourites.

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