I'm Pam, and I'm glad you're here. I hope my thoughts on family, faith, and the flux of life help you laugh, fire you up or just make you think.

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enriched beyond measure

I want you all to know:  I’m not always a whiner.

Okay, maybe sometimes I am.  Still, in case I misled you in my recent  posts in this series (based on Caryn Dahlstrand Rivadeneira’s book), I want to take time to recognize the amazing ways that I’ve been enriched by becoming a parent.  

Here are just a few ways motherhood has blessed, transformed, and enriched me:

1)  My heart has expanded

I don’t think I quite understood how far love could stretch until I started taking care of another totally dependent being.  It started with a puppy when I was six months pregnant (yes, a crazy idea).  For the first time I felt that loving ache– almost like a stretch in my heart.  When my son AJ was born, my heart expanded as I bonded with him.  Then NT was born looking completely different from AJ.  It seems funny, but that silly appearance factor erased any doubt I would have to divide my love.  I thought, “Oh!  This is a completely different child!”  as my heart ballooned for both little boys.  My daughter’s birth magnified my love even more, and I now understand how folks with quivers of children love each one uniquely, not equally.  I truly believe that parenting has expanded my capacity to love.

2)  My priorities shifted beyond myself

Yes, I do gripe sometimes, but without a doubt, parenting has shifted my priorities for the better.  My younger hopes and dreams were all about what I wanted to accomplish.  Now I must consider how every choice impacts my family, and most of the time that happens automatically.   By design, parenting has taught me to be less self-absorbed and more focused on others, and I believe I’m a better person for it.  As Caryn writes,

“When your day’s agenda includes learning about and enjoying the people your children are becoming, it makes sacrificing easy and rewarding–to a point, that is.”

–p. 16, Mama’s Got a Fake ID

3)  I “get” God just a little bit more

I’ve got a long way to go, but parenting has magnified and clarified my faith in so many ways.   Being a mother has shown me how God loves us for who we are rather than for what we do.  I begin to understand how God might allow us to struggle so we may grow through hard times.  And I really can see how it breaks His heart to watch us suffer, but know that he wants the best for us no matter what.  I’m beginning to “get” that, and a parental perspective has given me a metaphor to help me on my faith journey. 

Add these three to countless other benefits of motherhood, such as learning to survive without sleep, multitask like a maniac, and trust my intuition:  without a doubt, I’ve been enriched beyond measure by motherhood. 

How has parenthood (or another life-changing experience) refined or enriched you?

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