Playing Favorites


I know it’s not popular to have a favorite kid.  As a matter of fact, admitting that you like one child more than the other is generally frowned upon in the parenting community.  As parents, we are supposed to deal out affection, punishment, and reward in equal portions; every child is created equal, especially when it comes to having more than one, right?!!!


Clint and I have three kids, and I’m pretty sure that my favorite is Jaden.  He was, and is my answered prayer.  He is the oldest, and for the past 14yrs has been my tangible proof that my Jehovah has heard my prayers.  After three miscarriages, and thinking that I would never hold a baby of my own flesh and blood, Jaden made his way into my arms, and healed my heart in a way only he could.  He is the kid who finds a place for everyone he meets.  The way he does things makes me shake my head, laugh, and forces me to learn that I can’t control every little detail.  He never cleans his room, and is always wanting to go, go, go…come to think of it, maybe Isabella is my favorite?


My Bella is the one child I have who was planned.  We decided it was time for Jaden to have a sibling and a month later found out she was on her way; so totally the opposite of Jaden.  Isabella was born on a day we picked, and has always slept through the night.  She was the easiest baby, toddler, child, pre-teen in the world.  She loves order and keeping things clean (a girl after my own heart), and is the most giving person in our family.  Bella brings so much laughter (she may look like me, but she is her Dad through and through) and help to our family; how could she not be the favorite?  She is quite dramatic though!  I could do without the drama…maybe Olivia is really the fave?


Everything about Olivia Grace has been a surprise.  From finding out she was going to be joining our family (only SIX months after Bella was born), to her dramatic arrival (EIGHT weeks early).  If you’re doing the math, that makes Isabella and Olivia only TWELVE months and TWENTY-TWO days apart!   We always say she was so anxious to be in our arms she just couldn’t wait the whole nine months.  Livi has always been the child who sees what she wants and goes for it; no one can stop her.  Trust me, I’ve tried.  This stubbornness, and ability to fight no matter what is in her way, is the most admirable and frustrating quality she possesses.  I am pretty sure it saved her life from the moment she came into being; that and God’s gracious hand.  To this day it drives her.   My Liv is also the one who LOVES to cuddle, hates when I am upset with her, and goes out of her way to show love to anyone she meets.  She also LOVES to sleep…right now she is the front-runner 😉

Well, maybe not; she did yell at me this morning because we didn’t have any Poptarts….

The bigger point of my rambling on and on about my kids is that I’ve realized there is NO favorite.  My relationships with them are as unique as they are individual.

I can’t approach Jaden like I do Bella.   Or treat Livi like I do Jaden.  Or love Bella the same way I do the other two.  I can’t have the same relationship with all three of them.  I have been given these lives as a gift and in turn am responsible to see their individuality and cultivate it in a way that brings discipline, character, and love.  I don’t have a favorite; I have three little hearts that I love uniquely.

Jesus, sees us individually too.  Uniquely made in His image.  Set apart from everyone else.  Each and every one of us has His heart.  He carries every part of our being in His scars.  But, not one relationship is the same.  Some of us pray without ceasing.  Some of us are worshipers.  Some of us study until we feel like we are overflowing, and can’t help but share what we have experienced.  Some of us thrive in the quiet.  The beauty of Jesus is that He tells each of us to come exactly the way we are.

I will choose happy today because His love for me is as fierce as it is unique.


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