I hope what I'm about to say doesn't sound blasphemous or preachy. I just had a moment of pondering during my dinner preparations tonight and wanted to write it down.
It's a heroic statement to say "I'd die for you." But today while making dinner while holding back a stomach full of unhappiness while singing songs to Anna to keep her happy and running downstairs to tell Cody I love him and helping Lee find a fun activity to work on... something just came to me. It's much, much harder to live for someone than to die for them.
Dying just takes a solitary moment of bravery. But donating your life to someone else takes bravery every moment for eternity. I am so glad I am a mother. I'm glad I have a mother who donated her life to me. I realize now what that sacrifice really means: it means no more "me." And I mean no more. Everything I once was--my goals to be a world-famous author or Broadway star, any hope of a career, some days even just a quiet, hot shower... all of me is now devoted to my children. I know they're worth it.
But my ultimate realization is that I am incredibly grateful for my Savior who not only died for me, but lived for me too. He left a perfect example of love, and a whole (huge) book full of careful instruction for life. And after his mortal mission was completed, he began his immortal mission which continues now and through eternity. How beautiful! How selfless! How divine!
Being a devoted parent is the closest thing to Godhood one can achieve in this life. For a moment, we can step back and watch ourselves get completely lost in the development of others. After all, isn't that who God is? Our perfect, kind, merciful, and wonderful Heavenly Father.