I make my husband read all of my blog posts—because that's part of his job, right? But after he read the last one, he commented, "You're always talking about how your kids drive you crazy."
"Well, that's because they DO!" I replied, a tad defensively. But it got me thinking that perhaps he has a point.
So today, I'm going to put aside the diapers and the daily frustrations, and focus instead on five positives of motherhood:
1. The moment of birth - When you've gone through the hell of labour, your reward is the first instant that you get to see and hold your beautiful tiny newborn. If your experience is like mine, you'll feel an overwhelming rush of love and gratitude that's unlike anything you'll ever experience again. (At least, until the baby starts screaming and you have no idea how to stop it. Then the panic sets in.)
2. The best naps you'll ever have - When I think back on both of my maternity leaves, what I remember most clearly is the naps. Oh, the naps! Long cozy naps in the middle of the afternoon, feeling the baby's warm even breath on my neck as she snuggles up close, listening to my heartbeat...is there anything more lovely? Sure, babies keep you up half the night, but those afternoon naps almost make it worth it. Almost.
3. Living their accomplishments - This one starts as soon as your baby learns something simple—maybe how to sit up or crawl or hold a toy—and continues throughout your child's life. My 10-month-old, who can now crawl and pull herself up and climb stairs, is very proud of herself, and so am I. And I can't believe that my eldest—so recently a baby herself—is now such a capable little human being. One day, I hope, they'll both be graduating university, getting married, maybe having children of their own.... Watching your children reach milestones and have life experiences is a wonderful feeling, because you know that you had a hand in it.
4. The adorable things they say - As soon as my eldest started to talk, she went from three words to about three hundred. And three is a lovely age for language: now that she's able to express more than simple needs, the stories and songs she comes up with are so creative and imaginative.
5. Experiencing simple joys - Having kids gives you a reason to be a kid again yourself: to run through a sprinkler, or make a sandcastle, or get dirty for no reason. And you should see how excited my eldest gets about going to Tim Horton's or getting frozen yoghurt. When was the last time you
got that excited about something so mundane? Wouldn't life be just a
little better if you did?
Of course, the No. 1 reason to have kids—the one so obvious that it doesn't even make the list—is that it's the greatest love you'll ever know. And that's what really makes it all worthwhile.