Everyone hears it at some point during their journey to parenthood. “Your life is going to change forever.” “Be ready because this is going to be the most wonderful, frustrating, scary, and delightful journey you will ever go on.” Even as a child I dreamed of being a Mom and I completely embraced parenthood when I discovered it was imminent. Despite all my preparations I am still amazed at how becoming a mother has changed my life. Here are just five of the ways I have evolved.
1. My spiritual life is much deeper.
I was in a growing relationship with my Savior, Jesus, before I became pregnant but I related to Him as a woman and a wife but not as a mother. Having my son has shown me the depth of God’s love for me. Just the idea of sacrificing my only son for the sake of others is mind boggling. I still can’t fully grasp that level of love but my son helps me to at least understand a bit of it. Knowing the depth of God’s love for me drives me to run to him for His loving embrace. I am so unworthy and yet He gives freely. When it comes to m spiritual walk having my son has been the best thing to ever happen. I will be forever grateful for that.
2. I have experienced extremes of emotions I never knew possible.
I tend to be a more stoic person. I have emotions but I just don’t wear them on my sleeve. I am very introverted and that also means that I keep my emotions to myself. However, after having my son I have noticed that my emotions flow more freely and they are more extreme. When I love, I love a lot and deeply. When I am frustrated or angry, I can lose my temper in two second flat. I can feel my blood pressure rise. When I hurt, I cry. I embrace the flowing of good emotions because they make me a more loving, sensitive person but the bad emotions have got to go. I pray constantly that the Lord will give me control over the bad ones. As my spiritual life has deepened my emotions have as well.
3. I have become a Home-Body.
Before we had our son, my husband and I were constantly going out on the weekends. A good time was to be spent outside the home. Now we are both so busy with work, writing, keeping up the house, and homeschooling that time together at home as a family is a precious commodity. We love staying home on the weekends and enjoying each others company. We cook good food, play games, and watch movies. We often times will go out for a dinner on Sunday but the rest of the time is spent at home, the park, or the Grandparents. The big change is that being home is what I want to do. I love my family and I want to spend time together in a relaxed and quiet environment. What better place than home.
4. I have become less up-tight.
Before my son was born I was so up-tight about how I looked, how many friends I had, what my friends thought, and doing well in my studies. Now, I just don’t care. I do take care of myself. I try to eat right and I exercise. I work hard to look good for my husband. I do pursue my goals but I am not always worried about them. I love my friends and I pray I present myself as someone worthy of respect. The big change is that I just don’t care what others think anymore. Worrying about what other people think is a waste of time and energy. I focus on what my husband, my son, and my God think of me and that is enough. I have found a good place within myself.
5. I have learned that I become a better wife and mom if I pursue my own passions and goals too.
Finally, I have learned that it is okay to be a bit selfish when it comes to pursuing my own passions and goals. In fact, it makes me a better wife and mother because I feel more fulfilled. For the longest time I felt like I needed to be completely selfless, serving my husband and son at all times. I didn’t want to pursue my own thing because I wanted to focus on them. They were my thing. Well, that didn’t work for very long. I served them constantly but I was losing bits of myself. Not too long ago I remembered a dream I’ve had for years. I have always dreamed of running a marathon. Something clicked in my head that day. I thought, “You know what?! I am going to run this marathon! Come hell or high water, I am going to do this!! I deserve this.” I have been training hard since that day. Yes, sometimes I have to be selfish with my time but in the grand scheme of things it isn’t that much time. My confidence is growing and my waist is shrinking. My husband says he can see a big difference in my body and my mind and he likes it. Becoming just a little selfish to pursue my own dreams has made me a better person and I am forever grateful for that.
I could name so many other ways my life has changed since becoming a Mom. The ones above, I believe, are the top five. I look forward to seeing how this journey of parenthood changes me in the years to come.