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Motherhood is a miraculous phenomenon. Each mother’s relationship with her child is unique and precious. We can deepen our journey to becoming our best selves by taking the lessons to our family life.
Mothers are bonded by something common but exceptional. We celebrate and mourn each other’s successes and failures. But motherhood can become a source of worry and shame.
What Should Motherhood Success Look Like?
Ugh. Worrying about what people thought of me kept me from focusing on so many things that I knew, deep down, I wanted for me and my kids.
What if they didn’t match up with what I was supposed to want? What if I failed and looked like a fool?
Luckily, my Superhero Alter Ego is having none of that. She’s decided to carve out her own path.
Let’s scratch out that heading and try again.
What Does My Motherhood Success Look Like?
Your ideas of motherhood success might look quite different from mine.
So, these are a good place to start, but I’d love to hear what you came up with!
Safe, Warm and Fed
I remember my meager beginnings as a child from a low-income family and the struggle is sooo real.
I want my family (and me!) to always be sheltered, comfortable and full-bellied.
These three ‘core’ needs are taken for granted, while so many people in the world are disadvantaged.
Being able to provide my kids with what they need, keeps me in a state of constant success.
Leading By Example
When I look at each one of my children, I can see the future potential radiate from them like they’re covered with a spiritual aura. When I look at them, I see their greatness. I know I’m not solo on this. Yall no exactly what I’m talking about because you feel the same way about your children too. As mothers, as parents, we expect our children to excel in every aspect of their lives; but in order to require excellence, we must first model it in our own lives- within our own personal aspirations and within our home. I want to live a life that my kids can look up to. When they think of their Mom, I want them to be proud. I don’twant to be a hypocrite who encourages them to be the best they can be while I’m living the safe life- afraid to escape my comfort zone and become the best version of me.
Not happening! I take pride in walking the walk, so my kids will exude the same courage and confidence to realize their true potential.
In my home, instilling the importance of building a genuine family unity is one of me and my husband’s most important values. Growing up the word family was thrown around quite a bit. During my transition from child to adult, I would often question if my relatives actually understood the true meaning of that word.
To me, a true family loves each other unconditionally. Support one another’s goals and dreams. Nips negative energy in the bud to preserve joy. Celebrates one another. Make one another stronger.
Unity means that we always have each other’s backs. We’ll work together even when we have different opinions.
Observing my children cherish their family relationships, protect one another, and build strong bonds amongst each other is undoubtedly one of my greatest triumphs.
While traveling down my path toward self-discovery, I’ve realized the significance of the value of my time. It’s something more precious than I ever imagined! That’s why I’m so proud to be able to give it to my family. Being present in every moment with every family member is a new behavior that I’m learning to master. Juggling so many duties- homeschool, business projects, home life, it can prove challenging to stay focused on the task at hand.
With that being said, to ensure that I’m giving my kids the best of me, I’m making it a priority to give them their time and tend to their needs without interruption or inteference from other areas of my life.
I will not lie- this isn’t an easy task. But I’m now aware of the lack of balance, and have learned to auto correct this behavior when I catch myself slipping.
Talk it Out
Speaking of conversation, I want my kids to be able to come to me with anything.
As of right now, I only have one teenager, so he’s my Guinea pig per se when it comes to this conversation. I try to hear whatever he has to say and respond in a way that makes him want to come to me next time, too. I said try yall. I haven’t mastered this yet, so don’t judge me. 🙂
I understand the significance in not being afraid or uncomfortable to speak to my son- no matter how awkward the discussion, I do my best to talk to him about everything in addition to encouraging him to talk to me and dad about anything. Of course with teens things will not always go as planned, however, if things ever go astray, I know I did my part as a mother and parent and had the hard conversation with my child.
A Home Full of Love and Laughter
All the above makes this last one possible!
The reality of a safe, stable base – no dysfunction – is so important for a developing child. I’ve often heard the saying the mom sets the tone for her home, and I believe this to be true. The mood of my family will mirror that of my own.
I’m goofy by nature and love to laugh, but I am human and do have tough days that make it hard to smile at times. However, my home is my sanctuary. It’s my safe haven.
Whatever kind of day I may be having, I try to keep up the spirits in the home. There’s nothing better than hearing Dad cracking jokes- bringing everyone to tears. Or the kids doing something outrageously funny. Or just watching my children play and bond together- care free without a worry in the world.
Happy vibes are the key to maintaining a happy home.
What Do My Motherhood Failures Look Like?
I try not to focus on negatives, but there are a number of parenting pitfalls that I want to keep an eye on.
Those of us who experienced childhood trauma might have a tendency to suffocate our kids with our overprotective behavior – the dreaded “helicopter parenting”. I am so guilty of this. I can’t even lie. Tempting though it is to err on the side of overprotection, I need to let them live their ownlives and not project my fears onto them.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m in no way saying that it’s a sin to love your children too much- absolutely not. But in my case, I’m trying to find that happy medium- that somewhat perfect balance of protecting without coddling.
Let me explain the difference. When I was a child, I experienced the aftermath of children in my family being physically taking advantage of by adults in their lives that were either married into the family or friends of family. It is because of these experiences that I watch my kids like a hawk. Sleepovers… uh- No! So and so said they would like to babysit…. Uh- No! There’s a birthday party at whose house and we don’t know anyone else there… Uh- No!
This is what I call legitimate safety concerns for you child. I know yall are probably like, damn she strict. Yep! Just a little bit.
On the other hand, sometimes we as mothers can just do too much. I remember when my oldest son was younger. I would take him to the park. I remember being so scared to let him try all of the activities on the playground. Talk about being hella overprotective. I was trippin’ really hard. Be careful. Wait! No. Don’t get on that! That’s too high. It’s too many kids on this one. Don’t run too fast. I know my son probably was like, why did we even come to the park if I can’t do anything.
I’ve since learned this is not the way to go- referring to the second scenario. The older my kids get, I’m learning to pull back a bit. Allow them to make some mistakes, allowing them to fail, and giving them opportunities to solve their own problems so they can become responsible healthy adults in the future.
Being a control freak is something I am striving to avoid but often fall victim to quite often. This controlling behavior breeds more stress for my kids and our family, and often leads to over-criticism.
As parents our words are so powerful- even more than we realize at times. I’ve made it my mission to rigorously develop a regime for increased encouragement while eradicating the need to be overly critical. The last thing I would want is to destroy my children’s self-esteem. For them to garner feelings of inadequacy- never feeling good enough. No child wants to feel as if they are continuously letting their parents down again and again. They desire our approval far more than we know.
Why are we our own worst enemies? We place so much pressure on ourselves striving to be the perfect parent. Tell me if this sounds familiar to you: Condemning yourself for not doing more with your kids even though you play superhero every day all day. Blaming yourself if your child is not thriving. Second-guessing every decision you make. Or, comparing yourself to other parents. Crazy right!
In doing these things, I was unknowingly demonstrating to my children these same unrealistic expectations- setting them up to believe that if they do not achieve the highest standards, they’re a failure. Now, no parent in their right mind would say this to their child, but how many of us are just like me and don’t even realize that this was the message we were emitting.
Learning to let go of perfectionism is a new daily practice for me. I am not perfect and that’s completely okay. I cut myself some slack and embrace the fact that I am one hell of a mom. One who goes above and beyond to be the best role model that my children deserve.
Here, I mean losing control of myself. When we let our emotions get the better of us, we act on impulse. If those impulses come from anger or frustration, we can hurt people- either by saying things we don’t mean or acting in a manner that gives off an unintended vibe.
As much of blessing that motherhood is, I think we would all by lying to ourselves if we didn’t admit that some days are rough. We feel underappreciated, under-valued , and overwhelmed. The good days are much easier to combat these emotions- bad days not so much. I’m learning to find more effective ways to communicate so I don’t lose my cool. Establishing healthy communication is a must.
The Wrap Up
I’m getting a better grasp on what I want motherhood to look like –and what I don’t want it to look like.
Having this set of specific motherhood aims is helping me on my journey to personal development and transformation. At the same time, though, I want to forgive myself for the occasional slip. I am still human… even if my alter-ego is superhuman! 😉
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