Changing For The Better

Motherhood changes us. That just comes with the territory. I have caught myself looking in the mirror sometimes and just whispering to my reflection: “Who are you?” Not because I have lost my sense of self in motherhood, but because I am amazed at the person that I have become. I am someone who loves other people WAY more than I love myself. I was not that way before I got married. I mean, I loved people, but if I didn’t wanna get up at 6am for something…I wouldn’t. And if I didn’t want to eat healthy…I wouldn’t. I never knew that I had the ability to forget my own wants and do what was best for others. One major way I have changed is letting go of my (MANY) opinions of the past. Case and point? We just got a minivan.

My parent's never owned a minivan, we usually drove around in farm trucks, or the Jeep Grand Cherokee that my mom had for many years. I remember when my older brother and I were much younger, before our little brother came around, my parents had an 80's Cobra Mustang with red leather interior and orange and red racing stripes. I loved that car. The idea of minivans was so foreign to me that I never really thought I would own one. In my 20's I vowed vehemently never to own one, thinking they were slow and ugly and reserved for “soccer moms”. However, one thing I secretly liked about minivans was how convenient they were for winetasting trips to Napa, but I think that had more to do with the wine than the van. When my best friend had her 3rd baby in 3 years, I asked her with clear disgust, "You aren't getting a MINIVAN, ARE YOU?!?!" She laughed and said thoughtfully, "Yeah, I think it just makes logical sense."

Something that made logical sense?? What a novel idea. 

My husband brought up the subject of a minivan a couple months ago, he had done extensive research on many different options, every minivan that is out there was thoroughly investigated and cross-referenced. He showed my video reviews on each one, as well as official videos highlighting the safety features as well as all the cool bells and whistles that came with the van. Suddenly our current car seemed too small and cramped, and when we had visitors, we had to drive around in two cars because our family car's backseat became nonexistent for a 3rd adult passenger because of the two car seats. Walther's parent's visited recently and some dear friend's of ours lent us their minivan for the weekend so we could all travel in one car. I FELL IN LOVE. It was so convenient! SO SPACIOUS! So zippy! Driving around in that beauty made me realize that all the things that I focused on before were silly and vain, and I started to see the benefits of having a minivan. We picked up our new (to us) minivan a couple weeks ago and I LOVE IT. I want to run errands just to drive it around.

Motherhood has this funny way of changing us into people that we don’t always recognize in the best ways possible. I catch myself leaving story time at the library, chatting loudly with the kids as I strap them in their car seats in my MINIVAN, and I am like, “Who am I?! Like WHEN DID I HAVE TWO KIDS?!” I realize this when I am HAPPILY cooking in the kitchen (never thought THAT would happen) and making something healthy for all of us to share at dinnertime (when I really just want pizza) and think, “Who am I?!” Those moments catch me off guard, but they are pretty amazing. I also don’t recognize myself when I open my mouth and my mother comes out…but that’s for another post.

Now, this is not to say that you need to get a minivan. If you hate them, like I used to, and love your SUV, or sports car or whatever, that is great! Whatever works for you! But it isn't about the minivan really, it is about the decisions we make, and allowing our opinions to be changed, and to evolve as parents and as people. I am not at all the type of mom that I thought I would be. The hardest part of motherhood for me has been letting go of my selfishness and stubbornness and embracing this new part of me that only wants the true, good, and beautiful for my children. And I am so glad that I have a wonderful husband who always encourages me and challenges me to change and be open to new ideas. I am doing things that I never thought I would be able to do. Our children have a way of inspiring us to change so much about ourselves for their sake. I am still me, but better. I still struggle with so many things, but I am trying much harder to be a kind and holy. Allowing God to move within us, change and shape us into His image is a wonderful thing, and I truly believe He gifts us with children to aid Him in that endeavor. 

What are some ways that motherhood has changed you for the better? What inspires you about your children? What is something that you found yourself doing, purchasing, or participating in, that you NEVER thought you would do? Share with us!

 Copyright 2018 Diana Cantu. All Rights Reserved. 

Image Credit: Copyright 2018 Karen Padilla. All Right Reserved. 

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