This article was originally published on
Making Life a Bliss Complete. It has been republished here with permission._
We mothers endure some of the most intense pain we will ever go through as we bear our children. Yet, immediately after labor and delivery, we feel the most overwhelming joy we will ever feel as we hold our little angels from Heaven for the first time.
This duet of pain and joy doesn't end here, however. As they grow up, we see our children go through much pain. But what calms them down when they are upset? Our joyful cuddles. When they get hurt, what do they ask for? Our loving kisses. When they are bullied or forget their worth, who stands up for them and shows them how precious they are? We do.
Enduring pain with our children helps the entire family grow in love and understand true joy. As a family, we can do anything as long as we have each other.
Life always has ups and downs, but parenthood can help us see the cons in a more joyful light. Below are nine aspects of life that are enhanced by parenthood.
If you're a parent with young kids, at the end of each day there are likely toys strewn all over the floor, crumbs comparable to the sands of the sea under the kitchen table, kids with stains on their clothes and faces, and an insurmountable pile of laundry on the couch.
But, we can choose to be grateful. Crumbs show our kids are fed. Toys strewn on the floor show they are having fun and using their imaginations. Finding our own belongings randomly about the house shows they are curious and want to be like us.
It is good to livein our houses; it is what makes them homes.
As parents, we don't have as much time to spend on our physical appearances.
But, look at the bright side- there will be less "freaking out" when our kids sneeze in our hair, wipe food on our sleeves, or splash us while getting a bath.
All joking aside, we can also find joy and gain humility in tryingto keep our kids dressed with clean hands and faces, wiped noses, and dry bums. When that doesn't happen, we can feel a gentle reminder that perfect joy is more important than looking perfect.
Privacy and Free Time
Going to the bathroom alone or eating a meal peacefully will never more be taken for granted.
But, the busyness of parenting gives us a chance to learn to multitask and to reflect on what is most precious in our lives: time with our families. Free time will come, but remember, time with our children always goes too fast.
We don't have as many opportunities for romantic dates and vacations with our spouses.
But, raising our children can help us discover new ways to keep love alive.
There will be moments when we look at our spouses and just smile adoringly as we see him or her loving, playing with, and teaching our children
Also, as we try to be better parents, we automatically become better spouses.
We go to bed later and get up earlier. Often our sleep is interrupted.
But, we can pray for strength and energy. We find we don't need as much sleep as we used to, and we get more done. We also learn to never take a good night's rest for granted again.
Many of us are most impatient with our kids when we are in a hurry. It is a struggle to get anywhere on time, no matter when we start getting ready. We know that we should be more patient, compassionate, and gentle.
But, this is an avenue for us to develop these skills.
We realize that being a little late won't make the world end. We learn to care less about getting somewhere on time and more about how our kids react when life doesn't go as planned. The way we act in those situations is how they will act in those situations.
Peace and quiet hardly ever exist in a house with kids, so for our sanity we "get away" sometimes.
But, after we return, we embrace the noise with open arms having missed our children, even when we were gone for only a short time.
We learn that perhaps true peace comes from their presence-and not their absence-in our lives.
With kids come never-ending reasons to spend money. Sacrifices must be made.
But, being more budget-conscious helps us purge unneeded expenses.
Spending money suddenly becomes more rewarding when we pay for a field trip knowing our children will have fun and learn, purchase kids clothes enjoying how cute our littles are, or buy toys and books seeing anticipation light up their faces.
Food and Entertainment
We eat a lot of mac and cheese, watch Disney movies, read countless picture books, and plan most activities around our kids.
But, we soon learn that little else we would choose for ourselves would be as uplifting as what we experience now: our children on our laps, holding our hands, and perhaps happily sharing their food with us. Our greatest joy is ensuring our kids enjoy their childhoods.
Here's a quick list of more awesome pros to parenthood: Parents get
more excuses to act like kids;
the gift of seeing themselves in their children;
more opportunities for laughter;
the privilege of sharing their talents with their kids;
to be surrounded by cuteness ALL the time;
to receive and give more kisses;
great "kids-say-the-darndest-things" stories to tell;
endless reasons to be creative;
joy in their seedlings' accomplishments;
joy in the small things;
to see little imaginations at work;
special one-on-one parent-child dates;
to observe their children grow in love towards one another;
and-perhaps most importantly-divine purpose and ultimate joy in life's journey.