At Age 3, My Daughter Has Already Given Me So Many Gifts


As parents, we are the “givers” and our children are the “takers.”

It’s easy to assume that we won’t see much back on our “investment” until our kids have to pay their first mortgage bill or have their first child. Then they will have to be thankful, because they will finally have a window into what we have given and all we have sacrificed.

But the reality is, our kids give us so many gifts every single day of their lives. I’m often tempted to forget this when I’ve woken up in the night or when it’s been tantrum city all week. It’s true, I do give a lot. But as much as she takes, my daughter also gives back – every single day.

At Age 3, My Daughter Has Already Given Me So Many Gifts.

She gives me fresh eyes– to see the world differently.

From the moment we drove home from the hospital with my daughter, I’ve literally seen the world differently.

I am more concerned about today’s youth.

I am more amazed when I look at a flower.

I am more aware of how I treat my husband and talk about my friends.

With a freshness, I see this world– through the eyes of it’s potential.

My daughter gives me joy, even when things aren’t perfect.

It’s tempting as parents to play that “I’ll be happy when {fill in the blank}” game.

You know:

I’ll be happy when we have more money.

I’ll be happy when I can stay home with my kids– and not have to work.

I’ll be happy when we can buy a house– or upgrade to a larger one.

In my case, as a mom with chronic Lyme disease, I’m tempted to think to myself:

“I’ll be happy when I’m healthy and can go back to my career.”

But what if the “if” never happens?

What if you never have more money, lose your job or have to downsize? What if my health never improves? What then?

Do we really want to live our lives waiting for something to change?

My daughter helps me realize that, in this very moment, whether I’m healthy or sick, rich or poor, working or at home— I can be joyful and enjoy “the now.”

My daughter gives me company.

Often, life can be lonely. As moms, we are parents– not buddies. However, that doesn’t mean that our children can’t be good company. When we are sitting by their beds and rubbing their backs, they are fueling our hearts. When they nuzzle their heads in our laps as we watch a movie, they bring us comfort and a different sort of company than others can give.

When I’m tempted to get stressed over all that life requires, my daughter draws me out of my funk with tickles, cuddles and play.

My daughter gives me focus.

Since becoming a mom, I have a renewed sense of purpose. I don’t mean to suggest I didn’t have meaning before I had a child. I am certainly my own person– one that will go on strong, long after my daughter leaves our home.

There is a clarity, however, that comes along with your children. There is a renewed sense of meaning and purpose in life that extend beyond serving your own needs.My daughter helps me think bigger– to look beyond my own desires and to consider my family as a whole.

The next time you start to feel like your child has asked too much of you, remember all that they add to your life & the joy they have given to get you through each day.

Recall the joy they bring every morning as you see their faces and the tender moments of watching their eyes flutter as they give into sleep. What gifts these moments are to us.

Say to yourself: For all of this, I am grateful. For all of this, I am blessed.

One Reply to “At Age 3, My Daughter Has Already Given Me So Many Gifts”

  1. What a lovely and refreshing post. Thanks!!

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