Karla’s Korner: Ten Lessons I Learned From Being a Mother
Ten Lessons I Learned From Being a Mother…
This week as I sat around the table at a local restaurant for Mother’s Day dinner my mind drifted back to the day I became a momma. My daughter was born two days before Mother’s Day that year; she came home from the hospital Mother’s Day morning. That day was the beginning of many where I would find myself searching for answers to a bajillion questions and realizing that the whole motherhood thing was a learn as you go adventure where quite often the answers to those questions would change depending on the ages and stages my children were in. In less than a week my firstborn, will put on a cap and gown, receive her Bachelor’s degree and begin the next chapter in the book of her life; I am so proud of her.
Reflecting on my years of motherhood I realize that while it is my job to teach my children life lessons they have taught me as well. Because of my children I am a better person and wish to share what I believe are ten of the most important lessons I have learned so far; in no particular order.
- I do not have all of the answers. Parenting is a learn as you go, fly by the seat of your pants adventure that will provide you with the necessary answers on an as needed basis and quite often those answers are a result of something your child taught you. Acknowledging the fact that sometimes your child will be smarter than you makes it much easier to accept and move on.
- “Mom, I have something to tell you” will be a phrase that you hear often and each time you do you will hold your breath until they tell you. No matter what they tell you be glad that they are comfortable enough to tell you and that they are not keeping secrets from you. Providing a safe place for them to share their fears, hopes, dreams, mistakes and victories is important and will make those crazy teen years a bit more bearable.
- “Mom, I forgot to tell you something” will be said nearly as often as #2. There will be times when you find yourself racing to the store for poster board, string, cupcake mix or a number of other last minute items because they forgot about a science project or party donation. Keeping such items on hand will make those mad dashes in your pajamas less frequent.
- Saying “NO” is just as important as saying “YES”. Learning to accept disappointment is an essential part of life. Children who never experience disappointment will struggle later in life with rejection, disappointment and sadness.
- Your plans for your children’s lives will more than likely not be theirs. Your job is to love them, teach them, nurture them and allow them to make their own life choices. This will be a difficult task because you know they will get hurt or disappointed but you have to let them fail. Failure is a great life lesson that must be learned and not avoided.
- Each child is unique to themselves; never compare your child to a sibling or anyone else. Encourage them to embrace their uniqueness and individuality with the understanding that they may not always agree with you.
- You are your child’s parent, not their friend. There will be plenty of time for friendship with your adult children but until then it is your job to establish rules, create boundaries and follow through with consequences.
- No matter how difficult it is to admit your children will break your heart. They will say and do things that will disappoint and hurt you sometimes bringing you to your knees and no matter how many times you get hurt your heart will mend and you will learn and grow together.
- Perfection is not attainable, especially in parenthood. Let go of the idea that your child will always leave the house in matching socks, clean underwear and perfectly coiffed hair. As long as they are relatively clean and dressed it is a good day.
- Never ever give up on your child. The most important thing you can give your child is to love them through everything. Giving your child the gift of unconditional love and acceptance will allow them to learn, grow and become the adult they are supposed to be.
American author Joyce Maynard wrote “It’s not only children who grow. Parents do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours. I can’t tell my children to reach for the sun. All I can do is reach for it, myself”. I encourage you to embrace whatever stage of life you are in as parent and child knowing that there are lessons to be learned and lived. Live well. Laugh as often as you can and love with all that you have….
I think we all need a touch point a place we can go to be inspired. Karla is my children’s teacher, a good friend, and a person with a heart of gold. I hope that her words will inspire you to do more. We are only as good as the people we surround ourselves with. It is important to listen with your heart and proceed with your eyes open. Enjoy!
Read more Karla’s Korner, also please visit Karla’s Lifetime Moms page and read her articles.
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