I’m going to give a little shout out to moms today, seeing as it’s Mother’s Day. I’m not downing fathers, I just don’t have loads of experience with them, so I’m not really sure what they do. Most moms would cut off a limb for their child. We lose sleep, work multiple jobs, stand on our heads and whistle dixie for our tiny humans… Guess what? You’ll be doing that when they’re grown as much as when they’re toddlers. Sometimes, our little people do not do what we wish they would. This is true at every stage of their lives. It does not mean that you are a bad parent. I hate to break it to you, supermom, but you are not actually capable of controlling who another human being is, even if they call you mom. Are you significant? Absolutely. You are also the world’s leading expert on your child and no one knows them or loves them better. What you lack is omnipotence.
Tiny humans spring forth with temperaments. They are literally born individuals. They have wants, needs, and guess what? Whether you breast or bottle feed, whether you gave birth vaginally or by a C-section, whether you adopted or fostered…. your kids are going to be who they are. Some kids are anxious, some kids have no concern for their personal safety, some are stubborn and some are wishy washy. Tiny humans are a lot like big humans in that they have their own styles. As moms, our job is to guide them through this world with as much grace as possible. You teach them what you believe to be right, give them a moral foundation and take them to the doctor. Still, they will be who they are.
You feel guilty for supporting your kids, but how are they going to survive if you don’t? Or maybe you’re a stay at home mom, so you feel guilty because you’re showing your kids traditional gender roles. Quite commonly, you’re a single mom and you feel guilty for everything under the sun. It doesn’t help when you see all the nasty on social media about how to parent, what superfood (whichever one your kid will not eat) you MUST feed little Susie, or the hot new toy you really can’t afford. As a single mom, my personal favorite usually relates to getting a babysitter… How dare I ever want grown up time or to have adult relationships. Rosie O’Donnell said, “They put them in dumpsters and they live. Your kids will be fine.”
Bottom line: You do the best you can. Miss Shannon loves to cook so most everything is homemade… if you’re feeding your kids McDonald’s four nights a week, guess what??? You’re getting the job done. Forgive yourself, in short, for being human. Love them, give them the very best you can, love them, read to them and love them some more. Then let them see you take care of you…. You are teaching them how to take care of themselves and the women in their lives. My final thought for the day… learned hard over many years… if you don’t take care of you, you can’t take care of them. Be good to yourself, for some short people, you’re the whole world…