“Many voices in the world today marginalize the importance of having children or suggest delaying or limiting children in a family,” said Elder Andersen. “My daughters recently referred me to a blog written by a Christian mother (not of our faith) with five children. She commented: ‘[Growing] up in this culture, it is very hard to get a biblical perspective on motherhood. … Children rank way below college. Below world travel for sure. Below the ability to go out at night at your leisure. Below honing your body at the gym. Below any job you may have or hope to get.’ She then adds: ‘Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps. It is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for.’”(Neil L. Anderson,”Children,”Ensign, Nov.2011,28
As I was reading this article I felt such an agreement with this notion that parenthood is the last item on the adult to do list. I felt inspired to share my view and perspective on my journey in motherhood.
In my faith/religion motherhood is a divine calling, women are created to be a nurturer to children. I see men and women as partners although created with different abilities to be able to do different responsibilities, much like your left and right hands. To have children (whether biologically or by adoption), is the greatest thing a woman could do in this life.
That to have the ability to create human life, to have the gift to generate a new soul is incredible. It is such a miracle. Learning the science behind pregnancy and breastfeeding has strengthened my testimony of what awe my body can do and what intention I was created for. This power is abused in every day life and I think this is part of why some have lost sight of what a miracle a child can be. Even Christians who are in awe of God creating the Earth, its inhabitants, fail to remember the gift women have to also create life.
Growing up I heard a lot of adults quoting that ‘children should be seen and not heard’. I feel like most of the world feels this way too. Failing to recognize the significance of children. First and foremost they are the future, how does that affect me? Everything we find wrong in this life gives us the opportunity to teach children and change the future. Guide, direct and love them and they will be a force for good.
Second, my children have taught me more than I ever thought possible. Unconditional love, I never had a truer understanding until I became a parent. Before I had my kids I read a book called,’True Love in Marriage’ by Greg Baer, (which I highly recommend) and it spoke of love in marriage that I had never understood before and I started trying to become that woman for my husband, but it never felt right. As if I wasn’t grasping the concept and therefore my applications were falling short. Becoming a mother has given me a glimmer of what that love can be like. Imagine if the whole world understood and applied unconditional love, there would be so many possibilities for this life. It has helped me begin to become a better friend, sister, daughter, and wife. Btw Greg Baer also has a book called,’Real Love’ for those not married or ‘Real Love in Dating’ for those who are searching so there really isn’t a reason you shouldn’t be picking up this book.
All of my life’s experiences has lead me to this view and knowing this I want to be the best mother I can be. I want to learn from the best books so I’m reading, looking and applying. I’m taking care of myself mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally because I cannot give of myself if I have nothing to draw from. Some days my best is a dirty house, with the TV playing for more than 2 hours a day and lots of chicken nuggets and macaroni. Other days it’s me doing a personal study before they wake up, having meals prepped, house cleaned and us playing games together. Imperfection doesn’t diminish who I am as a mother.
I challenge you to ponder these words and reevaluate what parenthood looks like to you.
I’d love to hear from you, share in a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.