I wasn’t quite ready to be a mom.
Then again who really is?
I’m not sure what exactly I expected, but it is nothing like how I imagined.
I’m not talking about the sleepless nights or temper tantrums. It’s the all-encompassing nature of motherhood. It’s everything. It never leaves you and that is completely amazing….and frightening.
Being a mom is something I will be forever, and as Julie and Johnny get older I realize, how much of an impact I can have. I think about how angry words might scar or how encouragement might build confidence. Every day is a lesson for me as a mom.
It’s funny to think about this because I think about my mom. As a kid no one really doubts their mom. She’s got it all figured out. She’s all put together. My mom never let on that she doubted whether she was getting it right. Maybe she really did know the answers. I’m not sure. I just know she did it all. She wasn’t necessarily the cuddly type and I rarely remember her saying “I love you.” But, she always made us feel loved. She was the fixer and she was always there no matter what. The other day my mom told me a story about how sad she was when I went off to kindergarten. She cried when the bus drove away. “See I was always thinking about you,” she told me.
Sometimes things like that are important to say for a mom, even if it’s 30 years later. My mom helped shape me as a mom. She was just so selfless as a mom—always doing everything without questioning.
Though I didn’t grow up with her, Scott’s mom, Janice, also helped shape me as a mom. She’s more snuggly and touchy-feely than my mom, and more open with her feelings. Her life hasn’t gone perfectly, but she knows love is the most important part of raising kids. She loves her boys unconditionally and would do anything for them. And she understands that raising kids isn’t easy. When the kids act up or things go wrong, she just smiles knowingly, understanding, that’s how life is. From Janice, I’ve learned it’s OK to rock your babies every night—because it doesn’t last forever. I’ve learned that loving kids with all your heart is more important than teaching them to read at 3, or making them eat vegetables. And I’ve learned that it’s OK when you screw up, because life isn’t perfect and kids aren’t perfect.
Being a mom is about accepting and loving your kids unconditionally and selflessly. And about trying to be a better mom every day.