Teaching Heart Mom

Just a Mom With a Teaching Heart. Find fun activities to do with your kiddos and students (infant to age 10). www.teachingheart.net blog

Monday, May 10, 2010

Reflecting on Motherhood...

Happy Mother’s Day One Day Late! I hope you had a great day. My day and weekend was fabulous. I feel refreshed and loved! Perfect-o Day-o!

One thing about Mother’s Day that I love is that it reminds me to reflect on my life as a Mommy. Am I the mom, I want to be? How can I improve at being a Mom? What blessings are in my mommy life? I think it is good to reflect often on these questions and I would love to read your answers…

Am I the Mom I want to be?

I am always pretty hard on myself and have high expectations for my kids and for me. This can be a positive and negative quality at the same time. I think I am a good mom… but there is always room for improvement. Still, let’s stop and pat ourselves on the back… what do we do right? Here are my areas of mommy shine:

I try my best to make sure my kids know that I love them and some days that means stopping and just cuddling them or watching the do something and giving them a genuine compliment. I believe that high self-esteem is the single most important gift that a parent can give their kids. A person with a high self-esteem values himself and will not get into, or stay in, an poor relationship. A person with high self-esteem is more likely to be happy and to reach his or her full potential. I teach my kids self-esteem: by showing them that I value them, by spending time with them, and by talking with them and listening to them.

I know how to have fun… Let’s face it, kids grow fast. I even notice with my son that the days of lying on the floor with him and just rolling around tickling him are pretty much over (wipe tear from my eye). Yeah I can give him a little tickle here and there… but I get “O, mom!” now. My daughter and I can spend a good 20 minutes rolling around the living room floor tickling, playing airplane, and making silly faces. I find as a mom it is too easy to become a robot… Take Charley here and there, get homework done, make dinner, bath, bed, and repeat! Moms become so absorbed in the daily ho-hum that they forget to be silly and laugh with the kids. I try my best to just let go at the right times. I have been know to jump in puddles, squirt my kids with a hose when they are fully dressed, talk in a silly voice all day, and just let loose and be a kid with them for a little bit now and then. Kick the soccer ball, play catch, go for a bike ride, and make a moment with your child! Before you know it they will be packing those bags and heading to college.

I know that I am the Mom, not the friend… Hopefully I will continue to realize that as my kids grow. Families have changed over the years. It seems like now a days families are more democratic in their child raising believes. Let’s listen to our kids and hear them out! That is all good and well but kids still need us to be their parents and set clear limits. We should listen to them and respect them – but I have to remind myself that I am not their friend and God certainly did not put me on Earth to be a friend to my child (hopefully that will come when they are adults). When I was a younger and a teenager, I would get so mad at mom and dad for things and say stuff like, “I’m not going to be your friend anymore! Or I (gasp) hate you!” My parents would look at me calmly and respond, “We aren’t supposed to be friends, We are your parents and you are our daughter”. It used to drive me nuts, but they were right (imagine that – parents know best??). Our job is to be our kids’ mothers – not their friends. I think so far, I’ve got that down…
One thing I am getting better at is just letting go and letting my kids solve their problems. I have a good friend who I met when my son was about 18 months and I was always amazed at how she just let her kids experience things on their own without stepping in. If the kids were fighting over a toy… She would just sit back and watch. Me I jumped in and scolded my son. As the kids got to be older (say 4ish) and would fight. My girlfriend would put them together in the same timeout chair to work out their problems. Funny, how this method worked. I was learning at the time and still being a helicopter mommy. I am getting better of letting go and letting my kids figure it out themselves. I question rather than offer the answer and try to let them come to their own conclusions about things. I still drive them often to a conclusion… but I am better at going about it. The sense of accomplishment that comes with being independent is immensely important for a child. As much as I like to feel needed, I try to let my kids be as independent and self-sufficient as they possibly can.

Ways I would like to improve?

Patience – I know most moms want more of it… Raising kids is hard work. How many times have you started to get work done to be interrupted by a temper tantrum or a little voice saying “I have nuthin to do!” Don’t you have a play room of toys child??? Or when you know the kids are bored and they decide to bother their brother or sister for something to do and crying usually follows by one of the children involved? UGH!!! Here comes mom with her head about ready to pop-off!!!

I need to stop pulling out my hair and take a deep breath, pray, and be calm. It seems like when I do accomplish the breathing/praying approach the outcome is always better and both the kids and I are happier.

Push my Kids – But Not So Hard

My parents pushed me… but sometimes I think they should have given me a bigger push. I think I was a bit of a slacker because they were pretty democratic in the way they raised me. But that is probably just me reflecting my issues on to them. I turned out pretty good in the long run...  Still, I push and push my kids too much sometimes. They are 4 and 7 and I am already thinking about their future. I definitely know that I need to figure out a balance to how hard I push. My son does very well in school and the only bad grade he has gotten in his little school career is a P in handwriting. I freaked out and started making him practice everyday. Then one time about a week ago I got upset because he had a perfect spelling record and he missed one thus bring his 100% average for the year to a 98%. O-God, yes I am one of those parents. I was totally bothered by it and he is a first grader. Unfortunately, I see him pushing himself to perfection in academics and even in sports and piano. Sometimes my always happy little guy just looses it and breaks down and I know that a lot of that comes from the bar I set for him. I most need to work on teaching him it is ok to miss a few; it isn’t the end of the world. It is ok if you aren’t the best at something. As long as you tried your best, that is what matters.

What a Blessing Being a Mom is:
I always tell me kids that they were a present from God to me and their Daddy. It was the greatest present that God could ever give us. I thank God everyday for them, sometimes I thank God multiple times a day (especially on the days they are being really good – lol!) The best is when you are doing nothing exciting and you catch a glimpse of your child in a moment to themselves and you just feel an incredible sense of love for them. It’s better than any drug! I love that when my daughter is asked how she got so pretty she will reply, God made me that way. If she sees a picture of me before kids and then asks where she was and I tell her she wasn’t born yet she says, “I was just a dream that God was making.” My son doesn’t pass a soul without giving them a smile… If I had a nickel for all the times people tell me how he is always smiling or always happy, I would seriously be rich! “Is he always happy? Does he ever stop smiling?” I am blessed in more ways than words can say as a mother. Being a mother is the hardest job that only lasts a few short years… It is the greatest gift and my only true hope is that I can raise my kids with a great love of God. If I can do that, I pretty much feel the rest will fall into place. 

Thanks for reading. I would love to hear your mommy tips, what you need to improve, and how you are blessed as a mom.

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1 Comments:

Blogger jewelryandgiftsbyrebecca said...

Good Post. I agree with you on the importance of giving your children good self-esteem.

May 10, 2010 at 9:35 AM  

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