On the eve of Mother’s Day, my oldest asked me why anyone would want kids. So I thought I’d write a bit about my experiences.
First of all, when people tell you that kids will change your life, they aren’t kidding. And they aren’t just referring to the multiple overnight feedings or the lack of sleep or the endless amount of dirty diapers. They are mostly talking about how these miniature people come into your life, grab a hold of your heart and make you forget about life before them.
My kids are the best thing that I have ever done. My absolutely greatest accomplishments. They are getting to the age now where some days they make me want to drink extensively or pull my hair out but I still wouldn’t trade them for the world. They make me try to be a better person, they give me a reason to continue on and they hold my heart in their hands.
As you can see by my drinking comment, I’m not the best Mom in the world. I have plenty of faults and make plenty of mistakes. But overall, I think I have raised good kids who know right from wrong, have pretty good manners and are kind, smart, brave and strong.
I was lucky to be able to stay home with my kids for about 6 years. It wasn’t planned, in fact, I didn’t have any intention of being a stay at home Mom before I was pregnant or even during my pregnancy. But remember how I said that kids will change your life? I went back to work 4 months after my oldest was born. I really didn’t want to leave my baby and even more so, I didn’t want someone else raising my baby. So I asked if I could go to part-time hours. We could manage schedules so that someone was always home with the baby. And when the company I was working for went through some hard times and laid some people off, I was pretty happy to be one of them.
Living on one income can put a strain on any marriage and although I didn’t realize it at the time, our money troubles were really the beginning of the end of our marriage. And when my ex and I split the first time (yep, we did it more than once), I had to go back out into the workforce.
My kids were my saving grace during those hard times. I’m sure there were days I wouldn’t have crawled out of bed if I hadn’t had someone (or 2 someones at that point) depending on me for everything. I was a bit of a wreck but they helped me get through it and I did my best to be a great Mom. When I was a stay-at-home Mom, I always thought I was a great Mom. Cloth diapers, breast feeding, homemade baby food… if it was in the kid’s best interest I did it. When I became a single, working Mom, I still did my best to be a great Mom but sometimes you just do what you can to get by. Saturday morning cartoons were my saving grace for awhile. After an exhausting week, I could sleep in on Saturday morning thanks to cartoons.
It’s several years later and I still put my kids first. I try to teach them about rules, limits and doing your best. I also try to enjoy them. As we approach the teen years, some days I need to remind myself to enjoy them more. The time is getting shorter and they can be trying some days. But no matter how trying they are, I love them all the way to heaven and back and I will always be there for them no matter what.
So why would anyone want kids? They teach you about love, how to be less selfish, and make life worth living, plus hundreds of other reasons too numerous to mention. To all of you mothers out there, Happy Mother’s Day, and feel free to share in the comments why you think anyone would want kids.