One of the best things about Entrusted Ministries is the connection that it fosters between moms. The relationships we form with other mothers are a lifeline to sanity when parenting seems overwhelming. We are encouraged by their empathy, strengthened by their support, and comforted by their prayers. It is a beautiful thing to do this mom-life together.
And because it feels so good to hear from others who are going through the exact same thing you are, we decided to do a series of interviews with real moms from our community.
Meet Heidi Wolf, a mom we met through our Entrusted with a Child’s Heart class. Heidi authentically shares how she is navigating the joys and struggles of everyday life as a mom, and how she’s pressing on toward the goal of winning her kids’ hearts for Christ in the process.
EM: How many kids do you have, and how old are they?
HW: We have 5 kiddos. 3 boys: Kytn Jeffrey (13), Tucker James (9), and Bode Jackson (6), and 2 girls: Ady Lu (12), and Avery Mae (10)
EM: You took the Entrusted class for the first time when you had three kids (all under three years old) and one on the way. How did the class change your parenting?
HW: It was a hectic routine-filled season. Lots of changing diapers and sippy cups and naps. Our first four kids were all born 15 months apart. Entrusted was like a lifeline for me during those intense years. It joined my hearts to other moms walking the same road as me and allowed us to sit for a few hours every week and speak vulnerably about how we were really doing in the trenches. Betsy’s teaching is so biblically based, it created a path for me to follow and was an incredible source of wisdom and truth to raise my children in the way they should go. It gave me clarity in a foggy season of life, filled with little sleep and high emotional and physical demands from little people. Entrusted showed me as a young mom how to put practical feet to raising my kiddos based on THE truth. It taught me parenting based on biblical principles fleshed out in real life ways.
EM: What’s your favorite thing about being a mom?
HW: Getting to watch what God is doing in the hearts and minds of my kids as they grow.
EM: What is your greatest struggle as a mom? What are the areas you feel like you’re falling short in?
HW: Well my learning curve right now is junior high. My oldest is 8th grade, and then we have a 7th grade girl.
For my 8th grade boy the stretch has been for me to figure out ways to create hangout times for him and his friends while still holding to our family standards and rules, especially when all his buddies may be going to movies we won't allow. So I have learned to create alternatives, like having a handful of his friends over and then walking to the river that's behind our house to swim. Or making large quantities of food and having my husband do a bonfire and s'mores with them. Or dirt bike riding and hoops in the driveway. Still, he seems to be an easier learning curve for me then my 7th grade daughter.
Mamas.... The hormones for girls is strong and different. One on one time with her has been crucial. I've always known you have to be available when your kids are ready to talk but junior high it has become a REAL reality! A very late night reality. Shifting our parenting to more questions rather than telling. Helping her think through why what she did or said wasn't a great choice without laying it all out for her as the parent. Continuing to speak CALM truth when all that wants to come from that junior higher is dramatic arguing. Reminding my daughter, we don't argue. I am not a kid; I am your mom. Learning to enforce to her that we can have a conversation, and I want to hear all she has to say, but it has to be done in a normal respectful way. And at times, discerning and learning to just listen and not always "parent." Sometimes she just needs to vent and needs me to sit with her in her sadness. (Usually this is not something I view through my lens as sad or a big deal, but to her it’s all a very big deal.) These are just a few of the things we are navigating.
My greatest struggle right now is serving. As mamas we kind of always feel like we are giving and serving. But the reality is God has me at a spot where I feel like He is pulling and stretching me right out of my “comfort level” of serving. I'm learning that really I want to serve when it's comfortable for me or when it's something I feel like I can handle. My struggle is learning to serve even when it's super hard and I am stretched thinner than I ever thought I could be. (And unfortunately I don't mean thinner as in my thighs are shrinking ‘cause they sure don't seem to be!) It’s in that struggle that I find myself fully aware I can't DO all the things and that I need Jesus as my patience, strength and kindness in the crazy.
EM: How has becoming a mother stretched or grown your walk with the Lord?
HW: Wow. Well 4 kids, four and under, stretches you. That's for sure. But when Mr. Bode Jackson rolled into town, baby number 5, the train went off the track and I don't think it's coming back. It has stretched me to really dive into Scripture. How can I teach what I don't know? I want my kids to love Jesus with all their hearts, minds and souls. What they see their dad and me living, doing and saying is what they pick up.
EM: That’s a lot of wisdom to digest, and we so appreciate your candid answers. Before we let you go, how about some questions just for fun?
By what time of the morning (or afternoon!) are you out of pajamas?
HW: These days, because this is the first year all 5 are in school, I am dressed by 7:00! And I am not a morning girl so this should be applauded.
EM: How many times a night do your kids get back out of bed at bedtime?
HW: They don't. BUT! This should provide hope for you young toddler mamas! My youngest is 6… The day does come where they stay in the bed!
EM: Describe your personality in 3 words.
HW: Flexible, fun and give it all you got.