Rathjen Family

Rathjen Family
Rathjen, Party of EIGHT

Sunday, November 25, 2012

18 candles, 19 Tears

How does this happen? Friday night I placed 18 candles on my first born child's cake. Last weekend I watched him play in his last football game. Tomorrow I take him for his senior pictures. He applied to a college. Whoa. Wait a minute. I can still remember so clearly bringing him home from the hospital. I was a scared, lonely, ashamed little girl. I had turned 16, just 11 days prior. I felt so much pressure. Pressure to learn to drive well, pressure to lose the weight so I looked like all the other sophomore girls, pressure to keep my grades up, pressure to succeed. I was ashamed and I felt bad for the reflection my choices had on my family. It was strange, spending my Thanksgiving break learning how to breast feed, healing from child birth.

I wish I knew then what I know now. I wish I had know Jesus loved me while everyone else judged me. I wish I knew I was forgiven and I could ditch the guilt. I wish I knew then the day would come so soon when I would not care what my class mates were saying about me. I wish I knew then how proud this little boy would make me. I wish I would have known this sweet baby would one day be my rock and one of my closest friends.

If I could tell all the young girls struggling with insecurities and confidence a few things, I would tell them that no guy is going to "fix" that. They are knocking on the wrong door. The only way to fill the void and gain what they are lacking is a relationship with their Savior. If they will go to Him, He will do what any Good Father would do. He will welcome them with open arms. He will guide them.

I am so grateful I chose to follow Him and continue to receive His many blessings. I feel so fortunate I am forgiven. I am so grateful for my many gifts.




  1. Carson and I have been absolutely amazed by your boy. We were just talking about him AGAIN yesterday. SO impressed by this fine young man! And thank you for this post. I am just as impressed and amazed by you, and all that you have accomplished and the person you are.

  2. Love this post!!!! I can totally relate:) But....you beat me by a year. I was 17...... Beauty from Ashes:) I too am thankful God is forgiving, and used all of the "tough" times to grow me....closer to him....more ready for His work. Hugs to you!

  3. I replied to you guys and I don't see it on here...hopefully you will see this. Thanks to both of you for such kind words and thoughts. I feel so blessed to have met you both and know in time we will meet again. Love you ladies.