The first time I looked at my oldest daughter, I was so overwhelmed. I didn’t think I could love a person more than I loved my husband and yet here was this tiny human that we had made.
The first time she wrapped her little fingers around my finger, I was smitten.
I remember having to race my husband to her bedroom when she woke up from a nap.
We both just couldn’t wait to cuddle her.
This tiny little person whose whole existence was based on our ability to care for her and love her.
From that moment on, my life would be lived caring for her and the four other children who blessed my life after her.
I love being a mom. I love the person that these children have made me. They have taught me, by their very lives, to be selfless, giving, and nurturing.
It is my desire that my children believe that I loved them well.
This love was about sacrificing myself to make sure that their basic needs were met.
As parents that’s what we do. We offer our children sacrificial love.
A love that sacrifices for the betterment of another.
Scroll through instagram and you will see it.
The numerous moms and dads showing pictures of their sons/daughters in their piano recitals, sports championships, and/or science fairs.
The hashtags abound….#proudparents, #proudmomma, #proud
So many proud parents.
So many parents who are sacrificing for their sons/daughters to have more opportunities than they had.
We are exhausted, overscheduled, and yet so proud.
Sleepless nights with babies, afterschool math sessions, travel teams….
We all do it.
I remember once watching a TV special about Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson. The reporter was talking to her mom about her gymnastics training as a child. I remember her mom emphasizing how Shawn was always doing hand stands throughout the house, always toe prints on the walls….her whole life became about gymnastics. Her mom discussed how she realized that her life was just different from other moms.
She was sacrificing a “normal home environment”.
What about you? What are you sacrificing?
Do you look at instagram and wonder how some parents do it?
Maybe….let’s not stand in awe of ONLY the child’s accomplishment. Let’s stand in awe of the parent’s clear sacrifice in that child’s life.
For every successful, talented child, there is a parent and family that is sacrificing.
There is a family sacrificing, supporting, nurturing and loving.
Maybe it’s not beautiful family dinners on china every night….but it’s watching your daughter in her third softball game of the week…..because it’s EVERYTHING to her.
Maybe it’s once again not having that perfectly cleaned kitchen…..but it’s about letting your teenager destroy your kitchen because she’s passionate about cake decorating…..
Maybe you are having a quick fast food dinner in the car, so your son or daughter can play on the travel soccer team.
Maybe you looking longingly at Instagram at photos of kids playing near a lake or riding bikes with their families…..because you miss those simpler times.
However, let us always remember the why behind our sacrifices.
Deep down, you know that the sacrifice is about honoring the talents of our children.
Seeing the beauty of their God given gifts and helping them to flourish.
Watching as God’s plan for them unfolds…..
Watching the joy that comes from the struggle to success. The true beauty of the friendships formed in the gym, on the field, in the studio, and in the classroom.
You watch the inner pride that exudes from the core of who they are…
As parents, that is your reward.
As mothers and fathers, we want the best for our children. Our love for them can be overwhelming…our desire for their happiness everything.
We await the day when they will become adults and truly recognize our sacrifice.
Until then…..we will keep sacrificing…keep nurturing….always putting them first.