This week I had some interesting realizations about being a mother; they happened to not only be useful, but extremely timely. Lately with starting school and Sam beginning to work full-time, it seems the days drag on and I feel like a puppy waiting at the door for Sam.
I started to feel like life was going to be an accumulation of day-in, day-out laundry, messes, odoriferous dishes, and playing the same games over and over with my son, Parker, that were less than mentally stimulating. Honestly, life seemed boring and lacking purpose.
Then I started reading an article for my parenting class by Dr. Bruce K. Satterfield called “The Family Under Siege: The Role of Man and Woman” about the purpose of family. Thankfully, my thoughts changed.
As a mom, I am not just taking care of my boy and making sure he is entertained all day—I am becoming someone; someone more loving, less selfish, and more compassionate. My family and I are on a journey together and we are preparing to live together for eternities. We are practicing virtues, while simultaneously trying to purge ourselves of qualities and characteristics we don’t love about ourselves. Suddenly, parenting, even my marriage, doesn’t lack purpose–it is full of purpose.
Internalizing this idea has really changed the last few days for me. I feel like I’m taking more joy in playing with Parker. No, I’m not just playing with him so he won’t cry; I’m playing with him because I want to. I want to make memories with him. We are building a bond.
No, I’m not just doing my umpteenth load of laundry this week; I’m practicing to keep a clean environment that invites God and brings us peace at home. No, I’m not just picking up after my husband and grumbling about it; I’m showing I care and realizing we are a team—he’s had a hard week, too, so I don’t need to tally up the offenses he’s “committed” against me.
These relationships really do matter.
They matter not just because we’re connected on paper through birth certificates and tax records, but because we’re helping each other become better and grow. When I think about my little family, these relationships, extending further than this life, I care more and I love more.
How have you learned to find meaning in your family relationships? Do you believe in family relationships continuing after this life? I would love to hear your thoughts and beliefs!