I am “mom” to two of the most amazing, beautiful, wonderful daughters in the world. My girls are kind, compassionate, intelligent, empathetic, and talented. They love deeply. They care with their whole hearts. They are nothing short of incredible. And sometimes I have no idea why I was blessed with them.

There are days that I question my worth. I question what I have to offer, I question what I’m doing, I question if I’ll ever be enough. I wonder if my life here on Earth matters. I wonder why I face the obstacles that I do and where I am within the bigger picture. And then I look at my daughters.

I look at their ever-inquisitive and peaceful eyes. I hear their joyous laughter and the silliness that spills from their mouths. I watch them learn and take in that which is around them. I see them give to others, and comfort others, and look for friendship. I see all that they, at their still-young ages, already offer this world. And I am reminded that I, too, have a purpose.

I’ve been told that long before our children are born, they and God, together, choose their parents. Sometimes I feel like I have so many faults that I can barely fathom that anyone would want to spend time with me, and, yet, here they are. 

Maybe there is something they see that I don’t. 

These souls, ages 12 and 4, love me. They love me beyond measure. They look to me for guidance, for love, for comfort, for reassurance. They look to me and, amazingly, they truly like what they see. How do they do that when I haven’t liked what the mirror shows me for so long? What are they seeing that I don’t?

When I look at my children, really look at them, explore their eyes, their faces, their smiles, when I focus on the way they see the world and all that it has to offer, I see perfection. Their innocence, their zest for life, their feelings of contentment with just being, these things amaze me. I’m often so lost in my own head that I miss what’s right in front of me.

I’m worried about this, I’m worried about that. I’m focused on the past, the future, anywhere but the present. I act unkindly, impatiently, and ugly. I’m all of the things I don’t want them to be.

But I’m also all of the good things that they are. And that’s what I should be focused on. Because what I see in my daughters, well, that’s also in me. Their goodness, their kindness, their selflessness – I have all of that, as well. Their ability to have fun, to hug, to laugh, to be happy with what is no matter the situation – that’s all somewhere inside me, too. 

I’ve just lost my ability to see it somewhere along the way. 

If children really learn what they live, then the truth is they are learning these very things from watching me. They are learning how to be kind, how to reach out, how to have fun because we are doing these things together, and I’m not even realizing it! I’m so caught up in what I’m “not,” that I’m completely missing all that I am!

It’s a funny thing that while children are supposed to be learning from their parents, we parents are learning so much more from them.

We can teach them their letters and numbers, we can teach them how to spell their names and how to write book reports, but they can teach us about focusing on the now, and fearlessness, and self-love.

So I remind myself that these extraordinary beings are a part of me. They chose me for a reason. They see something I’m not seeing. They must know something I don’t. 

And I am ready to learn.