Mike & Jenny

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Location: Iowa, United States

Friday, May 11, 2007

Is motherhood a miracle?

About a week before Kjersten was born, Mike and I went to the hospital to have a Stress Test done to make sure that the baby was doing ok due to her late arrival and my questionable blood pressure. While we were talking, Mike asked me if I thought that a baby was a miracle or not. At the time, I couldn’t really answer that—after all how can you define such an “everyday” occurance as a miracle? I answered the question by deferring it to when the baby was finally born. When she was born, I still couldn’t decide and have thought about it periodically over the last few months.

Over the past few months, I feel like I have changed or maybe just rediscovered a part of myself a little bit because of Kjersten. My love for her is overwhelming and in many ways has reminded me how much I love my older two kids. As kids get older and personalities start to grate on your nerves, you forget to some degree how much you love your kids and can easily forget the wonder and amazement that you felt when they first entered your life. A few weeks ago, while at the grocery store, a couple was behind me at the store with their three active kids who were obviously irritating the hell out of them. The woman said to the man, “Kids are a pain in the ass and I have no idea why people want to have them.” I didn’t say anything to her and I understood what she was saying, but I realized that unfortunately we forget why we had them and lose sight of the fact that we love them.

As a result of participation in various new mom forums, I have really begun to realize how blessed Mike and I are to have a healthy, normal baby. Some of my friends underwent fertility treatment after treatment and still had no success. Once they gave up, they ended up pregnant and were blessed with healthy babies, but unfortunately it isn’t the case for many others who still yearn for a baby to fill their arms and hearts. Others have had babies who have serious medical problems and another friend’s sister recently lost her 10 day old son to an infection that he picked up in the hospital. When these gifts come to us so easily and without sorrow, I think it is easy to take it all for granted and sometimes life throws things at us that parenthood can begin to feel like a burden. Life passes by so quickly, children grow up before you are ready for them to and it really is a challenge to keep yourself in the midst of the amazing experience of watching them grow up. I’m sure many parents whose kids have grown up and moved away can relate.

I recently decided to look the definition in the dictionary and this is how it is defined:
1) An effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.
2) Such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.
3) A wonder; marvel.
4) A wonderful or surpassing example of some quality: a miracle of modern acoustics.

I believe that being a parent and having a child is a miracle. It changes your priorities. You see the world in a whole new way and get to experience the wonder of the world again through the eyes of innocence. You experience a type of love for another person that is unconditional, pure and deeper than anything you could ever imagine until you experience it for yourself. For me, it has also allowed me to discover a new side of Mike and watch him grow into his role as a father; witnessing his patience, gentleness and nurturing that without her I’d never see. You also find yourself connecting with your parents in a way you never imagined.

In light of all this, I’d like to wish all the mothers out there--whether they are new moms, experienced moms, grandmas, moms-to-be or moms-at-heart--a very Happy Mother’s Day. Don’t forget to send the moms in your lives a card or give her a phone call and let her hear the words endearing to every mom—I love you!