Finding Wonder in the Difficult

A few weeks ago, my husband and I were having our nightly catch up on our day’s events. It had been a hard day with the kids, and to cope with it I had probably spent more time on my phone than I should have. I was whining (oh yes I was whining) about how difficult one of our sons made it for me to zone out, when I was hit by an epiphany. Without thinking, I said, “Thank God for KC.” Franz and I stared at each other in surprise in the silence that followed those four little words. The realization of how true they were, and the shame at never having said them before stunned me.

If you didn’t already know, KC is our strong willed son. The son who was born with his eyes wide open, and didn’t shut them again for what felt like two years. He is our second child of four, the oldest by a minute of his twin brother, and our hands down loudest child. This child above all others has caused me more frustration and tears than the other three combined. However in the seconds after I uttered those words, I realized what a gift this strong son is.
He, along with his twin brother, started out as miracle babies to us actually. After having no difficulties conceiving our oldest son, we were surprised to struggle having more children. A couple years went by of frustration and disappointment, and finally we decided to take one round of a low dose fertility drug. We prayed over this decision for weeks, asking God for guidance and peace. A month later I noticed my pants were fitting a little tighter, and one night, after my son’s 3rd birthday party, I uncharacteristically fell asleep in his room putting him to bed. A couple mornings later I hesitantly took a test, and cried in the floor while I held my befuddled son, calling my husband at work and telling him to get himself home because we needed to celebrate.

From the moment KC popped out, his eyes were taking everything in, curious to know more about this world he was here to conquer. While his polar opposite brother slept peacefully, he would scream and need me to rock him for what felt like hours. As they got older he quickly established himself as the leader of this two pack, and frequently went toe to toe with his gentle giant of a big brother, always in a quest to assert himself.
As much as he fights hard, he also loves hard. He is our child who will throw his arms around you and tell you he loves you, just because he wants to. His love languages are physical touch and quality time, and he will seek you out like a blood hound just to be near you. He will comfort his brothers in their distress, he will fight for them if he senses injustice. He keeps us all moving, is forever curious and is persistent in getting a straight answer to whatever question his fast working little mind has come up with.


Almost five years of having this self-important little person in our house, and it took me that long to realize how badly we needed him. Without him we would have been complacent. His brothers and baby sister are “easy” kids. They sleep, they eat, they play, they are happy, they repeat. He has never followed the easy path, and he has caused us to grow more as parents than anything else could have. Nearly every parenting book I own is because of him (you’re welcome Amazon). He has helped me learn patience, self-control, and grace. Thank God for KC!

Sometimes I think we look at the hard thing in front of us and ask God to move it, or change it, and fail to see how it is moving and changing us. Without this son who requires so much effort, I might not have learned what it feels like to truly persevere, never giving up, even when I want to. He has made us, and me especially, better people, just from his mere existence. Rather than viewing him as a frustrating problem, I am learning to marvel at what a gift he is, both to our family, and hopefully someday to others. Yes, he still frustrates me, and yes, we still go toe to toe on the regular, but now in the midst of the struggle, I have a different perspective on why I have been given this little person. Not just because he needed me, but because God knew I needed him too.

“Can I sit in your lap mama, and see what I can see?”- KC

7 thoughts on “Finding Wonder in the Difficult

  1. What a beautiful and tender testament, lovingly written. KC sounds an awful lot like our Leena girl. Thanks for sharing Jen. This is something I need to work on too.

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  2. I know! It has flown by! A few of my favorites have been, 'You Can't Make Me (But I Can Be Persuaded)' and 'The Way They Learn' both by Cynthia Tobias. The second one isn't actually a parenting book, but I really enjoyed it and highly recommend it to any human to read. One of my favorites specific to boys is 'Wild Things: The Art of Raising Boys' by Stephen James & Dave Thomas. My current read that I'm really enjoying is 'Never Say No: Raising Big Picture Kids' by Mark & Jan Foreman.

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