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Proof the sacrifice for our family is worth it

As parents we might sometimes feel overwhelmed with what it takes to raise our children. On occasions we could want to throw in the towel and give it all up. However, a recent personal event reminded me why it’s all so worth it in the end.

I will share the event, but we don’t need to focus on the age element!

On the occasion of my reaching half a century, my children and closest friends decided to throw me a sort-of-surprise-but-not-really birthday party. It was the first time I’d really celebrated my birthday in a very long time. In fact, not since I gave birth to my daughter on my birthday 24 years ago had I really had a big party. For me, my birthday had become her birthday.

However, hitting 50 is a bit of a biggie, and it felt right to acknowledge this with my loved ones. My four kids decided to take everything in hand. I wasn’t stressed… much!

The kids take over

On the big day my eldest son led me to a privately reserved restaurant that my daughter had found after lots of research. My family had flown to Paris from England, and friends from far and wide had all gathered to watch me give a less than impressive speech that ended with a few tears.

It was a night I will never forget. Not just because I was surrounded by my loved ones, or that I was spoiled absolutely rotten. No, it was a night where I saw the efforts of my 25 years of motherhood — that had been far from easy — come to fruition.

I watched my four children as they chatted easily to friends and family, where they made incredibly thoughtful gestures to make me happy. They even ensured my favorite desserts were in plentiful supply. And to top it off, I discovered that my eldest son had refused any financial contributions for the event; he wanted to pay it all by himself as a thank you to me. But he also didn’t want me to know. Cue a day of tears.

During the evening I can remember, in a rather merry state, looking on and feeling that everything we’d gone through as a family had been worth it. My struggles were nothing compared to the joy I felt on this evening.

And that is the gift of parenting. We don’t know at what juncture in our lives we will reap the rewards for all the work we’ve put into raising our kids. But when it happens, we realize that we haven’t really made sacrifices, we’ve struggled to an extent so that we can be truly grateful for the joy that is to come.

While my story is obviously personal to me, and I’m still overwhelmed by it two weeks later, there are wonderful stories of sacrifice that really help to remind us of the blessings of parenthood.

Read more at Aleteia 

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