I stood on her porch.

We talked about the weather and wondered how it was possible it was mid-summer already. We talked about our day and what was ahead for us.

And before I knew it, I had tears.

They popped out of nowhere. Surprising me. Likely surprising her.

“I don’t know why I am crying.”

The things that our hearts carry are always close to the surface.

Sometimes I forget this.

And sometimes I remember when I find myself on my friend’s porch in tears while the kids play and the sun shines on their laughter.

She is a home schooling mom and we send our kids to public school.

In the midst of our conversation, she said, “It doesn’t matter how you do it, it’s hard.”

And that has stuck with me.

So many times the decisions we make as parents put us on opposing sides and we end up feeling that

we must defend our decisions.

We form opionions and sometimes offer them without any understanding of what it is like to be that person, in that family.

We don’t have to stay on opposing sides of the debate – whatever that debate may be. The fact is no matter where we are, what decision we are facing, we are in the same place: Hard.

We can support, love and care for each other in these hard places. We can pray for each other in the circumstances that cause tears to spring to our eyes. We can meet in coffee shops, in homes and on front porches and find that we are in the same hard place of trying to raise and love our kids well. We can do life and parenting together and still do it very differently from each other.

Here’s to more tears, more prayer, more burdens halved – on front porches.


Search for kindling:

Where are you struggling as a parent right now? *You don’t have to find a mom with the exact same set of circumstances in order to be encouraged by them. Find someone you can be real with about your hard place.