Our final guest for the week is the fabulous Kate from Centsational Girl. She is a mother to 3 and a “bargain hunter, design lover, incurable DIYer, living in Northern California’s Wine Country.”
I’m so honored to be here Melissa, thank you for including me in your “Things I’ve Learned About Being a Mom” series! Becoming a mom is a life changing experience and in my mind the most influential job a woman will ever have. I consider it an honor and privilege to be blessed with little souls and consider motherhood to be an amazing gift from God. I often marvel how I was entrusted with something so important as the ultimate caretaker in the life of another human being. I could talk for days about what motherhood has taught me but I’ll try to be succinct today and keep it short! Here are five things I’ve learned from being a mom.
A Swollen Heart. The heart’s capacity to love grows exponentially when we’re entrusted with the life of a child from the moment of their birth. Every step of their development adds a new layer so that after many years your heart swells as it grows larger and larger and by the time they reach adulthood, you’ve experienced great joy, pride, contentment, anxiety, and sometimes even sorrow all because of the layers of love that have built up on your heart.
Children Are Teachers Too I don’t remember much of my childhood but now I get to live it all again vicariously through my kids. Their inquisitiveness and innocence continually teach me to appreciate the world with new eyes and they are great reminders to slow down and live in the moment. Last August, I was encouraged by their words to savor the season, and even a recent interview with them taught me some important lessons as an adult.
It’s Not a Competition. I’ve met several moms over the years who tout their seven year old’s “pre-Ivy League” resume of accomplishments from their brilliant musical recitals to membership on elite sports teams. Yes it’s our job to encourage our children to be the best they can be, but I’ve never been a big believer in pushing children for the sake of parental bragging rights. Kids need time to be just kids and as moms we need to be careful of buying into that mentality that if our kids are not mini Mozarts then we’re bad mothers. I think that’s nonsense. Sometimes kids just need be kids and build a fort! We as moms need to remember to make decisions that are best for our family’s welfare and happiness. IN other words, we need to build our own forts and resist the pressures that can creep inside from comparisons to other moms of the world.
Messy is Meaningful. My children wear T-shirts from Walmart and shoes from Target, and it’s a rare day when my son is wearing matching socks. That’s just how we roll. My children are typically dirty after a full day of play and my house is rarely in a state of perfect cleanliness. There are signs of life inside our walls from the popsicle stick homemade jail on the kitchen table to the toys scattered across a floor to the piles of laundry needing to be folded. The fact that my house is not perfect is actually symbol of pride for me – those messes represent there are children at play in a world of their imagination and I know from having raised a stepdaughter (now off at college) that those moments are fleeting. It’s important to embrace those sticky fingerprints we hurry to clean and recognize there will come a day when they’re not there anymore, and we will miss them for what they represented – a home filled with growing children.
The Priceless Gift. There is no greater gift in life than receiving the love of a child. Period. Will it matter twenty years from now that my home was featured in a magazine or that I had at one time a popular blog? Nope. What will matter twenty years from now is that I was loved by a child unconditionally for all the long selfless hours of devotion. To me, that gift of love is worth more than any amount of money or worldly definitions of “success”.
Thank you Melissa for inviting me to be your guest today and recognizing the value of motherhood with moms as guests from across the blogosphere! Happy Mother’s Day everyone!