For starters, being a mom has cleaned up my mouth. I hate to admit that when I met my husband, he commented that I had a foul mouth. If a used 20-something car salesman is telling you that you have a foul mouth, you may a problem. But something happens when you bring a tiny little soul into your home. Suddenly, the words that flowed forth from your mouth with no hesitation sound appalling. I found myself, even when David was an infant and was far from uttering his first word, using other words. When David finally did begin speaking, and he used the word freakin' quite frequently, I decided to alter the euphemisms as well. Call it growing up if you want to, but I found it was this immense responsibility to teach my children through what I do. I can't ask a two-year-old David not to use the word freakin' when it comes out of my mouth every fifteen seconds.
Another activity I gave up was throwing things. Pre-children, when I got angry, I never hesitated to throw something across the room. I remember back in my teens getting frustrated over bangs that wouldn't fix just so, and throwing my brush as far as it would go. It was an instant release, an explosion of anger. Of course, it never solved any real problem, but it felt good. Boy have I mastered the deep breath technique. There are many times when I feel that same fire of anger building up in my chest, but I can't say that I've thrown something in front of my kids more than once or twice (hey... didn't claim to be perfect, just better). The last thing I wanted was to get a note home from pre-school telling me that my daughter threw her paint brush across the room. Sad thing is that even though I have tried to calm my inner anger, it's apparently hereditary... Madalyn has on more than one occasion locked herself in her room and thrown all kinds of things around in anger. Something tells me she'll throw a brush or two in her life, but hopefully not over the bangs not being high enough.
I think, in general, as a mom, I love more deeply. Not just my kids, but I love my husband more as I see him loving them. I love my parents more as I realize what they did for me along the way. I love God more as I realize that He loves my kids even more perfectly than I could ever dream of loving them. And I feel God's love for me more as I understand what it's like to fully love without condition. My kids could spit in my face, and though it would devastate me, my love wouldn't diminish one bit. Because I look at them, I see their talents and flaws, I see the goodness and happiness in their little souls, and the love for them just grows and grows everyday.
I feel incredibly blessed to be a mom.
My carpets have spots all over them. I can't ever find a pen when I need one. There's toothpaste dried up in the sink. My shoes are all over the house because my daughter never puts them up after she wears them. I buy my makeup at Walmart because one of the kids always needs a new pair of shoes or a bigger size in clothes. I am frazzled. But I wouldn't have it any other way.
Thank you, Lord, for the changes You've brought about in me because of both the blessings You have loaned me...