The Little Things: The Joys of Motherhood
By KELLY PRESTON, Special to The Paper
As a mom to four children, I know firsthand that parenting is the most rewarding yet most challenging “job” there is. With no job description or manual to go by in order to be a good parent, it’s often confusing to know what to do and not do. And it’s often easier to focus on what is hard about parenting – temper tantrums, picky eaters, discipline issues, sleepless nights – just to name a few.
But in light of Mother’s Day this month, I set out to discover some of the JOYS of motherhood. I asked a group of local moms, “In one sentence, what is the best part of being a mom?” I received a plethora of answers, everything ranging from snuggles, to watching your child achieve what they’ve worked so hard for, to knowing you’re teaching the next generation how the world should love each other.
After analyzing all of the answers that I received, two overarching themes emerged when it comes to the best part of being a mom: giving and receiving unconditional love, and watching your children grow to become who God created them to be.
Unconditional love … don’t we all yearn for it? The vast majority of moms in my poll stated that the best part of being a mom is loving someone no matter what and more than you ever thought possible. In return, many moms said that receiving unconditional love from their children means the world to them and that this is a powerful lesson in how God loves each of us. No matter what. No strings attached. You are loved!
“Nothing … will be able to separate you from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38
Moms also believe the best part of being a mother is watching their children grow to become who God created them to be. Watching in awe when your children do acts of kindness without being told to do so. Seeing your children become more independent and competent. Watching their personalities blossom. Admiring the good human beings they are becoming.
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” Proverbs 22:6
My mom left this earthly home nearly nine years ago, and I miss her every single day. She was not only an amazing mom to my three younger siblings and I, but she also deeply loved all of her grandchildren. I can only hope and pray that I come close to being the kind of mom (and someday grandma) that my mother was. Even in her dying days, she taught me so much about the importance of family and living by your values. And she taught me exactly what the moms in my little poll proclaimed: unconditional love is the heartbeat of motherhood, and watching your children blossom into who God created them to be is pure JOY!
Keep up the good and hard work, moms! From one mom to another, you are noticed and appreciated and loved! Happy Mother’s Day!
Kelly Preston is a nurse-turned-stay-at-home-mom to four amazing and energetic children. Though she sometimes forgets to buy toilet paper amidst their busy schedules, Kelly finds time to run RACE for the Orphans, a non-profit focused on supporting adoptive families. She loves Jesus, people, a really good book, and pondering the little things.