I have two kids. They are currently the two most perfect human beings on the planet. I firmly believe that my daughter will grow up and become the next C.S. Lewis while curing cancer in her spare time. I also believe that my son is going to be an astronaut who also plays in the NBA. I'm not even joking. They really are that amazing. I feel so confident in who they are and who they will become that I don't even feel the need to compare them to other people's kids. There is no comparison. Mine are perfect.
Now you are thinking, "Whoa. Easy, lady. I'm sure your kids wet the bed just like everyone else's."
Yeah, they do. You're right. They are probably pretty average. I just happen to love them.
This has been a slow realization that started when my mom came to help me after my daughter was born. They tell you that a recuperating new mother should sleep whenever the newborn sleeps. But sometimes, instead of taking my own nap, I would just stare at my daughter while she slept. One evening as I beamed love-rays over my newborn, my mom put her arm around me and asked, "Is it weird for you to think that I love you as much as you love her?"
Yes. That was weird for me. Though I hadn't really thought to compare loves, I could not have imagined that anyone had ever loved anything as much as I loved that girl. But there it was. My mom loved me that much. She'd been staring at me the whole time I'd been staring at my daughter.
This got me thinking. The thinking got me to researching. Why do parents love their kids so much?
1. Children leave their DNA in your heart.
There is literally cell migration from baby to mother during pregnancy. These fetal cells (from born and unborn children) can be found in a mother's heart, blood, skin, bone marrow, liver, and kidneys. These cells have been known to protect against certain cancers, generate new neurons in the mother's brain, heal wounds, and aid in recovery. Your children are literally always with you.
2. Children activate your brain, nerves, and hormone levels.
Inside each of our chests there is avagus nerve. This nerve is activated when we spend quality time with our children. This nerve enables communication between the body and the brain and it directs oxytocin to be released. This leads to feelings of love and admiration towards our offspring. Your children literally make you happy.
3. Children become your life.
Since I became a mother everything is different. I have dedicated every single day to my kids. Every choice I make runs through the lens of how will this effect my kids, even when I'm not with my kids. When I leave for my part-time job, my daughter knows that I go to work so that someday I can buy her a horse. Which is totally true. I am investing my time, effort, love, and essentially my life to raising positive little people. My children are literally my whole life now.
Children help parents become better people by contributing their cells, activating happiness in your brain, and giving their parents a worthy purpose. It's hard to be objective about my kids. They are more than just part of my family, they are part of me. The best part. And this doesn't mean that my kids can do no wrong (I have an uncommissioned Sharpie mural in the kitchen that suggests they can), or that I'll take their side over every teacher, or that they will actually grow up to be astronauts and scientists, but it does mean that they have already made the world more special just by being them and doing what they do.
So yeah, my kids are better than your kids … But then again, so are yours.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on Candy House Blog. It has been republished here with permission.