As Ted and I raced to the hospital early that Wednesday morning, we looked forward to coming home in a few days with a bundle of joy and working that bundle into our color-coded synchronized schedules. The lightning bolt came out of the blue. I was not expecting my life to change dramatically. My nanny was set up, my clients knew how to get in touch with me while I was at the hospital. The nursery was well appointed and organized. Yep, having a baby meant a joyful addition to my full, productive, busy life.
I looked at her.
From the first look of my first born daughter I was smitten. I had loved my parents, my siblings (as best I could!). I had loved my friends and of course, my wonderful husband.
But this love…totally different.
Women had told me that love would be the foundation for every form of interaction, education, encouragement, correction, and connection that would occur between mother and child.
Got it! I knew love. Heck I even wrote poetry!
But oh! How different this love was as compared to anything else I had ever experienced. I took one look at her face and turned to my husband and said, “This changes everything.”
I wasn’t wrong about that.
We know that love is patient and kind;
Love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude.
It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all
things. Love never fails.
(I Corinthians 13: 4-7)
Obviously, the demonstration of my love for Rachelle (and her four sisters and three brothers) took many different forms through the years. Love took the form of walking the floor with a screaming infant for hours on end. Another image of my love for her reveals a well-placed wooden spoon on a padded diaper, sitting on the stairs until the headlights turned in the driveway at 1 a.m., and then quickly running and jumping in my bed to receive her good-night kiss, as if I had not been waiting up, all these actions portrayed my love for her.
Tears and smiles, whispers and yells, love notes, and birthday cards all demonstrate this unfathomable love I never knew possible before her birth.
With eight grown children, I have given and received millions of demonstrations of the innate quality known as family-love. Love may be difficult to define, but it is impossible to exclude in a relationship between parent and child. The way I modeled love for my littles taught them how to love their brothers and sisters, friends, future spouse, and their own children.
One Valentine’s Day when Ted and I were pitiful poor he recruited a then six-year-old Rachelle to help him cut 100 red hearts out of her school construction paper. He let her help him hide the love tokens all over our tiny condo so I would find them when I came home from work late that night. There was no way that little girl could go to sleep because she was giddy with delight over “Daddy’s big secret for Mommy.”
Our kids transform our understanding of love. Hopefully, we transform their world through that love.
About The Guest-Blogger:
Johnnie Seago is the author of Practice Parenting, her articles focus primarily on
Helping families transition from childhood to adulthood
Teaching parents to communicate with their adult children
Working through difficult situations as teens become adults
Providing resources and ideas for productive grand-parenting
Johnnie is a national conference speaker who is passionate about building leadership in families. As the mother to eight adult children, she desires families to learn to connect and communicate and to build a community of support. She extends her leadership and team building experience to schools, businesses, and civic groups.
Johnnie and her husband, Ted has been married for 40 years. They live in the suburbs of Houston, Texas on a lake where they enjoy boating and water sports and the occasional day of floating and reading.
Click here to read more articles of Johnnie Seago.