You nailed it, Peartree2u. As I mature, I think that service-to-others thing is really a service to myself. As my boys become less demanding of my time, I see that it is them who have put my life back on track. (don't get me wrong, I'm often derailed) Showing me, shallow worldlyness is where I was dwelling as an adult. (though I considered myself above it) I believe it takes an exceptional person, (Mother Teresa type) to grow in selflessness, without first having kids.
I don't think we are all to become the "same mom." But, I think that where ever each of us is going, it involves growth. (which is often done with gnarling of teeth and self-pity)
I guess that makes it sad irony that we overindulge and materialize the the ones who could save us.
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