Moms! Listen up! You are doing a great job! Your children are going to turn into men and women of their own choosing. You can positively influence this process but you can’t really control it. In the end you will be the one that will be forced to let go as they decide their own identity. Breathe! They are going to learn that there will always be someone faster, smarter, thinner, wiser, and more together than they are. That’s our lesson also. Perfection is a myth. Put your best foot forward but understand that your best is different from others and that is just fine.
Our job is to help our children learn how to be decent human beings. We are not living their lives nor should we. We are living our own lives. While we have chosen to have children and take on this monumental task of raising the future generation, we cannot protect them from the world, although if you are like me you can’t help but sometimes try. In fact, I’ve had many moments when I have had to realize that by trying to overprotect them I was stunting their growth. Tough stuff.
I used to be judge and jury when it came to my own mother. I learned my lesson! My children are my teachers. They have been so adept at showing me how many mistakes I make in my daily parenting skills, judging my mother has fallen to the wayside. In fact, I think my mother rocks for putting up with me! I know I certainly rock for not losing my shit when my son holds a mirror up and tells me how imperfect I am!
Yesterday I was feeling horrible about my momma self. My two youngest children have decided to be cavemen (in more ways than one), and although they love the great outdoors, they can lose themselves for hours on their digital gadgets. This makes life extremely easy for me but when your child has a meltdown because he is not permitted to watch yet another Minecraft video you know it is time to take action. I sent them outside to play. Since it’s not quite tick season they roamed and roamed for an hour, climbed over fallen trees, looking for hidden treasure and just enjoying their great adventure in the woods behind my house. I put on my proud momma badge but first berated myself for not doing the right thing sooner.
We mothers need to cut ourselves some slack and dare I say this, support each other instead of competing with each other. Being a good mother is about balance and while we may not always get it right, sometimes we do! Motherhood is about teaching your children about life so that one day when you aren’t there to hold their hands they will hear your voice inside their hearts. Here are some lessons I try to teach my children.
- Be accountable for your actions, don’t justify your own bad behavior. I certainly won’t.
- Don’t be another child’s bad memory. Do not bully.
- Do your best in your academics. It’s OK to fail but it’s not OK to fail because you didn’t try.
- You may not be a professional sports star. Your education is worth more.
- Grades are important but the skills needed to socially interact with others can be even more important. There are plenty of former brilliant straight A students who take orders from someone else.
- Balance is a great word. Understand how to apply it in your life.
- Forgive yourself, forgive others but be wise about who you trust.
- Words hurt, be careful how you use them.
- Learn how to make a proper apology.
- Your word is everything, if you say you’re going to do something do it.
- Your teacher deserves your respect, and by the way, so do I.
- Courage doesn’t mean you are not afraid to do something. Courage is being afraid but doing it anyway. Be proud of yourself for trying.
- Compete against yourself, realize that even if you compete against others and sometimes win, they can probably beat you on other skills or in other ways. Don’t be so cocky.
- You are going to make mistakes. Learn from them.
- Clean up after yourself. You show me love and kindness when you do.
- If someone tells you something about themselves believe it.
- Be strong, stand up for yourself, pick girlfriends/boyfriends that deserve you.
- That weird kid in class? You don’t know his struggles, his financial, emotional or psychological background and situation. Be nice to him.
- That mean popular kid? The one who makes you feel bad? You’ll be his boss one day. It’s all good. Just stay away from him.
- Find your passion, do the things you love to do.
- You need to eat all different kinds of foods, even the ones you hate. Why? Because I love you and I care about your well being.
- Know that you are loved and you have my support, even when I may not agree with you, I will be here should you fall.
- Be brave and be honest with yourself and with others.
While I try to teach these lessons, there are many times I stumble during the mommy marathon and my husband and friends must pick me back up. It’s OK to stumble but it is not OK to stay down.
Moms, one day we will miss our children so very much. For now, fight the good fight. Much love to all. Rock on mommas!