Saturday, May 17, 2008

Food for Thought

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, everything keeps breaking! It' didn't stop after the post either, it just keeps on coming in full force! Just to name a few our back car window, cell phone, garage door, computer (on the fritz so we are replacing it before it crashes), bike stolen, my crowned tooth, windshield and much more I think I have blocked from my memory. I thought to myself after my tooth fell out this morning, what is the Lord trying to teach me? I haven't figured that out yet, but this wonderful talk given by M. Russell Ballard, a leader of my church, keeps coming to my mind. I think this needs to be heard by all mothers of young children and framed in my house. He has such encouraging words. I wanted to share my favorite parts with you. It's a little long, but please read, you will be glad you did!

There is no one perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children. The choice is different and unique for each mother and each family. Many are able to be “full-time moms,” at least during the most formative years of their children’s lives, and many others would like to be. Some may have to work part- or full-time; some may work at home; some may divide their lives into periods of home and family and work. What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply and, in keeping with the devotion she has for God and her husband, prioritizes them above all else.
We need to remember that the full commitment of motherhood and of putting children first can be difficult. Through my own four-generation experience in our family, and through discussions with mothers of young children throughout the Church, I know something of a mother’s emotions that accompany her commitment to be at home with young children. There are moments of great joy and incredible fulfillment, but there are also moments of a sense of inadequacy, monotony, and frustration. Mothers may feel they receive little or no appreciation for the choice they have made. Sometimes even husbands seem to have no idea of the demands upon their wives.
As a Church, we have enormous respect and gratitude to you mothers of young children. We want you to be happy and successful in your families and to have the validation and support you need and deserve.

Recognize that the joy of motherhood comes in moments. There will be hard times and frustrating times. But amid the challenges, there are shining moments of joy and satisfaction.

Don’t overschedule yourselves or your children. We live in a world that is filled with options. If we are not careful, we will find every minute jammed with social events, classes, exercise time, book clubs, scrapbooking, Church callings, music, sports, the Internet, and our favorite TV shows. Families need unstructured time when relationships can deepen and real parenting can take place. Take time to listen, to laugh, and to play together.

Even as you try to cut out the extra commitments, find some time for yourself to cultivate your gifts and interests. Pick one or two things that you would like to learn or do that will enrich your life, and make time for them. Water cannot be drawn from an empty well, and if you are not setting aside a little time for what replenishes you, you will have less and less to give to others, even to your children. Avoid any kind of substance abuse, mistakenly thinking that it will help you accomplish more. And don’t allow yourself to be caught up in the time-wasting, mind-numbing things like television soap operas or surfing the Internet. Turn to the Lord in faith, and you will know what to do and how to do it.

Pray, study, and teach the gospel. Pray deeply about your children and about your role as a mother. Parents can offer a unique and wonderful kind of prayer because they are praying to the Eternal Parent of us all. There is great power in a prayer that essentially says, “We are steward-parents over Thy children, Father; please help us to raise them as Thou wouldst want them raised.”

Life can get discouraging. I know, everything's breaking in my life. But there are so many things to be grateful for. That's what I am trying to remember. I hope this word can bring other young mothers hope and validation. If you want to read the whole talk (there's more good stuff in it) it's here.


Stephanie said...

that was really great Carlie. Thanks for sharing it. I hope things start to pick up for you!

Any pictures from Holy Cow???

pam said...

I love you Carlie. You inspire me. I'm proud of you for doing so well and hanging on when everything is breaking around you. Life happens like that sometimes. Mom.

vana chupp said...


Thank you! This post was all i needed to read today to make me feel better and put a smile in my face.
Thanks for stopping by and your help choose 4 prints. I truly appreciate it. Vana