Perspective: My family’s “normal” is not your “normal”

Life changes the moment our perspective changes.

I had an email from an old friend today that I haven’t spoken with in a long while. In her email she detailed the last year-and-a-half of their family’s life journey. It’s been an incredible walk of pain, heartache, questioning, sorrow, joy, relief, victory, peace, learning, humility, reality, healing, and discovery as they’ve dealt with multiple health issues and surgeries and unknowns related to their baby boy.

As I read her account, tears streamed down my face as I imagined her and her dear husband and sweet baby forging the new territory together. Hundreds are praying for them around the world, and no doubt God is listening. (It’s obvious when reading the strong and courageous words of this young mother about the way they’re coping.)

Once again I was reminded of perspective.

My family’s normal is not your family’s normal. Each family is faced with obstacles and difficulties and trials that no one else will every fully understand, but each family is also faced with blessings and gifts that no one else will completely comprehend either. Our common thread is the knowledge that we each have been entrusted with vulnerable little people to care for that are infinitely valuable and precious beyond words… and the love that ensues.

Family love runs deep. A deeper love I know not of.

Speaking of love… did you see this one? One more time for good measure:

LOVE. that. boy.


So today I’m thanking God. I’m giving thanks for our trials, our burdens, our circumstances, our joys, our victories, our challenges, our growth, our hope. I give thanks for our family story that is still unfolding – some days like a comedy, others like a drama, and still others like a long stretch of dry prose.

Recently someone googled “hug your babies tight and count your blessings” and landed upon this blog. Seeing that show up in my site stats just made my little heart sing, because at the end of the day that’s exactly the type of thing I’d like to be known for.

So in closing today I will leave you with just that:

Hug your babies tight and count your blessings…. And remember that life changes the moment our perspective changes.

Dear friends, has anything happened lately in your life to help you gain fresh perspective?



About Author

Adriel Booker is an author, speaker, and advocate based in Sydney, Australia who believes storytelling, beauty, and the grace of God will change the world. Adriel has become a trusted voice in areas of motherhood and parenting, Christian spirituality, and global women's issues. She's also known for her work with the Love A Mama Collective—serving under-resourced women in developing nations through safe birth initiatives—as well as her years spent as a Bible teacher and leadership coach. Her latest book is Grace Like Scarlett: Grieving with Hope after Miscarriage and Loss and she's made the companion grief journal available for free. Find Adriel across all social media platforms at @adrielbooker or sign up for LoveNotes, Adriel's 'secret posts' that aren't published anywhere else online. ✌️


  • Amy Sullivan
    18 July 2011 at 11:17 pm

    I love that someone Googles “hug your babies tight and count your blessings” and they ended up here, but that isn’t surprising. This is such a place of encouragement for all who stumble upon it.

    My two-year-old always gives me a fresh perspective. Everything is always exciting for her, each minute just a time to enjoy.

    Hope all is well with you.

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      27 July 2011 at 8:25 pm

      Thanks for your encouragement Amy. Means a lot to me. 🙂 And yes, WOW, aren’t our children the best teachers? (Well, any children for that matter…)

  • Carol
    19 July 2011 at 1:59 am

    Exactly. Life circumstances can change things so quickly, and often we can get caught up in small daily issues that just shouldn’t matter as much as we let them. Often it takes big stressors, tragedy, or misfortune to make us appreciate the everyday things that we should be appreciating all the time. I attended a sermon on Sat. night that focused on this issue and it did help give me a fresh perspective on what really matters in life.

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      27 July 2011 at 8:30 pm

      Yes, as hard as it is to face difficulties it certainly does make all the difference in how we treat, respect, and try to be deliberate about enjoying life.

      A friend of mine posted this on her facebook today… I just love it:
      ‎”It’s amazing how much we can endure when we are convinced there is a purpose to our struggle.” -Erwin McManus (from the book Soul Cravings)

  • Micheline
    19 July 2011 at 7:22 am

    I really needed this reminder today, so thank you! My patience has been challenged a lot recently and I have to remember to count my blessings! My son is healthy and happy and I have a baby girl to look forward to and so much support around me. I am so lucky.

    P.S. That is THE BEST photo of Levi! He is completely lovable!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      27 July 2011 at 8:32 pm

      Well… having a toddler and being pregnant is no easy task… so at least give yourself some grace. 🙂 But yes, it does help to have reminders now and then that life is actually not that bad, ey? I’m with you, I’m so with you. 🙂

  • Nessa
    19 July 2011 at 9:29 pm

    Lovely… I can hear your worlds loud and clear. Expanding our family and the possibility that we might loose the expansion makes you grateful for the little moments. Enjoying the time you have.

  • casey
    20 July 2011 at 11:22 am

    I love that someone googled you with that phrase and I cannot think of a better blog to pop up for that!! The picture is darling by the way and what you said is so true. Our family love for our own family does run deep and it is such a special thing experience our highs and lows uniquely to our families. Wisely spoken my friend! xoxo

  • Rosilind
    22 July 2011 at 2:20 am

    Boy this is the truth!!! My family’s normal is that we rarely get to eat 5 meals together a month, “family day” is a rare thing, and our basic family routine is interrupted on a regular basis…all because Z works shifts, weekends, 6-7 days a week, and most every holiday. But, we function somehow. It’s all in how you view your circumstance. And because each family has its own unique-ness, we have to remember to have grace for those we may not understand. We never know what someone else’s family may be facing…and how we would react if we were in their shoes. I love this post – and your little man is a DOLL!!!!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      27 July 2011 at 8:33 pm

      Yes, your family’s normal is certainly not normal! 😉 You have a whole set of challenges that most of us would never even dream of. But you do it well my friend, you do it well. xx

  • Alicia
    22 July 2011 at 3:25 am

    This post really touched my heart. My family {extended family as well} have all been going threw a really tough season over the past few months and it’s helping me see that when growing up I took a lot of the wonderful blessings that God placed in my life for granted. I hope I can teach my baby girl what really matters in life and what small stuff doesn’t so she doesn’t hurry threw certain seasons of her life like I did.

    p.s Your little man is just adorable!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      27 July 2011 at 8:35 pm

      I’m so glad Alicia. I I hope that you will experience grace on a whole new level as you teach your daughter what you are learning. Aren’t you glad to be always learning? I sure am…

  • Susie B. Homemaker
    22 July 2011 at 8:05 am

    So true… great post! I’m enjoying my 3 beautiful girls today- we’re beating the heat by playing board games inside. 🙂 The picture of your boy is absolutely adorable!

  • Dalia
    24 July 2011 at 4:48 am

    I love this post Adriel, it’s exactly what I have been thinking these last couple of days. It is very true. Hope that you have a blessed weekend.


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