Thursday, June 9, 2011

On Motherhood...

Some days being a mom is all unicorns and rainbows. Your baby is smiley and perfect, you get to shower, your hair is done, makeup on, and you get to smile and watch your precious little one learn something new (like pushing the buttons on her new favorite toy). Bathtime is full of songs and splashing and the snuggles are perfect.

Other days... it's a little different. You walk out the door with wet hair, walk back in to a couch full of clean laundry that's been there for almost 2 weeks, trip over baby toys, dirty diaper 'sausage' by the door, dinner is a box of mac n cheese or cold cereal, your baby has pooped out of their diaper and clothes three times that day, running on zero sleep, have bags under your eyes the size of Texas, and no matter what you do... nothing will calm your poor teething baby.

Motherhood has its ups and downs. If every moment was as euphoric as gazing into my daughter's eyes for the first time... I might just explode. And if every moment involved being covered in spit-up and baby poop... I might just explode. But every moment is perfect. There are more than enough smiles and giggles to get you through the screaming and nights with no sleep.

I look into her little eyes and all I can do is tear up and say, "Thank you, thank you for making me a Mother."

Mother's Day this year was a little different. The last few years have been hard. I have spent Mother's Day mourning the loss of my own mother and focusing on the "maybe's" and "what if's". What if I stayed home from school? What if I just agreed with her when I was a teenager? What if I hadn't forgotten her last birthday? Maybe we could have had a better relationship. Maybe I would have stayed home with her the last few months and we could have mended the few arguments we did have. Maybe... maybe... maybe.

Unfortunatley, nobody has invented a time machine... and we must live with the decisions we make. Finally... this year on Mother's Day, instead of worrying about dids or didn'ts- I got to really focus on the true meaning of the day. What it meant to BE a mother.

Giving birth doesn't make you a mother. Although in most instances, it's one step in many to becoming a parent. Women become mothers in all different ways. I had the priviledge of being able to carry and deliver a beautiful baby girl. I may not have called it a priviledge when I was 37 weeks pregnant, on bedrest, and miserable from head to toe. But in hindsight... it is the biggest blessing I have ever received. There isn't another moment in life when the veil between this world and the next is so thin- I truly felt my Heavenly Father's presense the moment I held my little Bailey in my arms.

"Do the best you can through these years, but whatever else you do, cherish that role that is so uniquely yours and for which heaven itself sends angels to watch over you and your little ones. Husbands—especially husbands—as well as Church leaders and friends in every direction, be helpful and sensitive and wise. Remember, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”

Mothers, we acknowledge and esteem your faith in every footstep. Please know that it is worth it then, now, and forever...

...It is clear that some of those Rhode Island–sized shadows come not just from diapers and carpooling but from at least a few sleepless nights spent searching the soul, seeking earnestly for the capacity to raise these children to be what God wants them to be. Moved by that kind of devotion and determination, may I say to mothers collectively, in the name of the Lord, you are magnificent. You are doing terrifically well. The very fact that you have been given such a responsibility is everlasting evidence of the trust your Father in Heaven has in you."
-Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, "Because She Is A Mother"

There will always be good days and bad days, no matter what we try to do in life. Motherhood is full of ups and downs, but the reward is so phenomenal. I am so grateful for my princess and the wonderful opportunity she gave me to be a Mommy.

I pray I can live up to my own mothers amazing example and make lots of wonderful memories for Bailey to have as she gets bigger. I can't wait for the decades of mothers days to come!

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