Why We Need the Children

In an era where we're all about choice it seems inconceivable why anyone would surrender their individual freedoms to have children. After all, children are viewed as a shackle; a ball and chain that ties you down for at least 2 decades if not more. This view isn't erroneous, as many parents will attest to the fact.
Frankly, the commitment level of having a child ranges somewhere between "the hardest thing I've ever done" to "the hardest humanly possible thing". Faith and I are blessed enough to have parents who are more than willing to take care of our two younguns. Even then, a good night's sleep has become an alien concept and a faraway memory.
<a href="" title="Anne and Caleb by Lucian Teo, on Flickr"><img src="" alt="Anne kissing Caleb" class="img-right" /></a>But the rewards! Being so intimately intertwined with another life is an indescribable experience. And this small person will reveal the crust of cynicism and jadedness you've accumulated over the years of dealing with adults. This child of yours has no agenda, yet in the most gentle and stark of ways shows you how things really ought to be. Spending a day with my kids resets the priorities of life. They remind me of the simple and inexpensive pleasures like a good conversation or the sound of laughter.
Just moments ago Anne cried. She had spent a good portion of last night cobbling together a present for her brother Caleb using scraps of paper carefully cut with her pair of scissors and held together by scotch tape. It had fallen on the ground and broke apart before her brother could do the official unwrapping. Looking at her crumpled countenance, I could empathise with her pain at watching her hard work fall to pieces, and am reminded to similarly apply myself to my craft, regardless of whether management will eventually break it.
There are so many lessons we learn in parenting, and I would venture to say that they teach us more than we teach them. My only hope is to hold on to these valuable lessons they impart to me, that I may one day impart it back to them.

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