Most mothers (and fathers) will tell you that being a mom is no picnic. Now, when you times that by 3 children, 3 and under, soon to be 4 children, 3 and under (for a few months, at least) and when November rolls around it's still 4 children, 4 and under, which doesn't sound much better, we've left the picnic arena and graduated to the full on 5-course meal from the fanciest restaurant around. So, if it's not easy, why do my husband and I and so many other couples choose to bring children into the world? This is the lesson I feel I have been learning over the last few weeks as I've entered the last month of pregnancy. There is something so special about creating a life, I'm not only talking about creating and bringing a newborn into this world, although that in and of itself is a true miracle, I'm talking about how everyday I have the opportunity to help shape another human being into someone remarkable and the joy that comes from doing just that. For example, I was so excited when my babies learned how to walk! I would practice with them for days, weeks, and months on end and the moment they each took their first steps I was overcome with joy and accomplishment! But why? I didn't take the step for them. It is something they had to do all on our own; but, somehow I felt validated for all the work and love I put into that first step and the many steps that followed (and now, I've been feeling this same way about potty training!). I find so much joy in helping my children learn!
The hard part is knowing what to teach them and how! Recently, I watched a Conference talk called The Greatest Challenge in the World-Good Parenting by President James E. Faust. It was so good to be reminded that #1, yes, it is a challenge to be a good parent and takes constant effort, and #2, that with the Lord's help, it is possible.
Some other things that I love about being a mother are dress-ups, movie-time snuggles, watching my girls pretend (when they don't know I'm looking), mealtime conversations, reading and making up stories (my girls love being turned into butterflies that live in flowers who get so tired they have to have a nap), park trips and playgroups, swimming parties, when my girls say they are grateful for mommy & daddy during family prayers, thank you's from my Chelsea Rosie for taking her to Cherry Hill (with no prompting), my girls telling me they love me when they are in time-out, smiles, hair-dos, and the list goes on...
Here's a few pics of my loves: (being "mac & cheesy" as usual)