As moms, we talk a lot about being moms. It just seems to be what you do when you become one. It's like the second you welcome that little one (or ones for those of you with multiples) into your life that your daily conversations will revolve around diapers and teething and tantrums and loving until you feel like your heart just might burst from your chest. At least a good portion of your conversations will anyway.
And among all the really wonderful stuff—the "this little piggies," the goofy first smiles and steps, the giggles and rambling conversations of very enthusiastic 3 year olds—there is the not so wonderful stuff—the diaper explosions ("it got in his hair!"), the fevers that come out of nowhere, the crying for no reason, the sleep deprivation, and the way that your patience will be tested like never before.
Through it all we talk. We talk to each other for support. Has yours ever done that? How do you handle it? We talk to others to explain. Sorry, she's not in the best mood. She's just so tired. We talk to ourselves. Constantly. Ok, after I drop everyone off, I have to get to the store and then home before 4:00. Then I need to make sure that the bathrooms are clean so that no one sees I left the pee in his little potty…again. Us moms. Big talkers.
But what we've noticed lately, is that when we talk about ourselves and what we DO as moms, we're not being very nice. No one is harder on Mom than she is on herself. We don't think there is one mom out there that thinks she has thing mom thing in the bag. That she's got it all figured out. And that's probably true—no one's perfect. But, we're also willing to bet that Mom's doing a heck of a lot better than she believes.
Just ask Kid President. He'll tell you. Video Link.
Or check out what these children said about their moms. Video Link.
See, moms out there, our children think we're doing pretty well. All those moments you think go unnoticed: when you let your toddler stir the muffin mix, when you get on the floor and do puzzles or color, when you sing along to their favorite songs over and over (and over and over…) in the car, or when you get them to laugh after they've been scared or hurt. They notice. To them, that's love.
When you cheer on your little soccer player's goal like it was the winning point for his World Cup team, he hears you. When you dance like a crazy person in the living room with your daughters on a random Tuesday, they remember. What they don't notice are the doubts you have regarding just about every decision you make. Is he old enough? Should I let her go? Was that a mistake? Was I wrong to get mad about that? And yes, we will all goof up sometime. And, we're sure, have to apologize to our children more than once. But they'll notice that, too. A mom that loves them enough to look them in the eye and say, "Forgive me."
We're all doing this Mom Dance a little differently. Some of us work outside the home, some are full-time stay at home moms. Some of us are single, some are married, some live with extended family. Shoot, some of us "Moms" are dads. Dads are pretty stinking awesome, too. But what we wanted to say, Mom (Mommy, Mama, Momma, Mother, Ma or whatever you happened to be called), is keep up the good work. We appreciate you. And those little people you love so much? We're going to bet that they do, too.
Jessica & Rachel