Of the many females I know, quite a few of them are mothers.
One thing that strikes me the most, when I think of each family group, is that all mothers have a unique relationship with their child and the parenting style varies dramatically from person to person.
No two mothers are even remotely the same.
It is utterly impossible for them to be the same. The mothers personality and characteristics are entirely unique and so too is the child’s.
Parenting is an alchemical blend.
Our children are the gold.
So, when I find myself looking at others and wondering if I should have done this, that or the other differently—and been more like the other mothers—I have to quickly remind myself that I have compromised, altered and adjusted each step of the way to fit my mothering style to suit the personality of my daughter.
My daughter has always been a free spirit, and so, I have always been cautious to ensure her wings are not clipped. She has been allowed the freedom to develop who she is on the inside, without my alterations from the outside.
She does not “belong” to me. She has her own soul, with her own desires for her life, and it is my responsibility to guide her and watch her fly.
All children are a mixture of magic and miracles, and each one of them is a one-off creation that has been gifted to this planet. And the nurture that they receive is a constant blend of personalities, influences, boundaries and guidance.
Mothers want the best for their children, and the majority also worry frantically that they are not doing enough—that they could try harder and do better.
Moms—you are already enough.
Parenting is the biggest responsibility we will ever receive, taking care of a precious life that is a part of ourselves. We will all make mistakes, at times. We will all mess up and cry and get frustrated and wonder whose crazy idea it was to trust us with such an exquisite bundle of joy!
We are constantly told, “It gets easier as they get older!” No, it just gets different.
Before we have children, we are not fully prepared for what exactly will be expected of us. The majority of us can cope fine with the physical side, sleepless nights, chores and giving nourishment. It’s the emotional side that haunts us when we close our eyes.
Every time our children feel pain, we feel that pain as though it were ours. Whether it’s physical, or emotional. If they tumble, get rejected or are feeling poorly, we suffer too.
Parenting is a blessing, but it also hides its curse.
We will worry, and that worry will never leave us.
Not even when they’re older than we are now. We will worry when they first go to school, when they aren’t eating their food, when they have their first date and when they eventually leave home. And then, we will worry some more.
I’m not sure there’s a mother I’ve ever spoken to that doesn’t have the same fears for their child and whose natural instincts to protect are on high alert daily.
So, for all the mothers feeling the same—let’s stand shoulder to shoulder, never judge one another, know that we are all, each one of us, doing what is our best and let’s not compare, judge or criticize—ourselves or others.
There are no written rules we make much of it up as we go along.
One thing I always say to my daughter is, “You are the perfect daughter for me, and I am the perfect mother for you.”
Realistically we both know, neither of us are perfect. However, we have a dynamic that works for us. Unconventional and testing at times, and though we bend and sway, we never break.
I imagine how my daughter would have grown up if she had had an entirely different parenting style than mine.
Unimaginable, as she would not be the unique and magnificent person she is today.
Yes, she would still be unique and magnificent, but she would be entirely different.
And I would not wish to change one single thing about her. Which, despite all my doubts, fears and insecurities, makes me realize that I must have done something right along the way.
In the video below, 50 women were asked to describe their mothers, here are some of the words they used which shows how different each child sees her mother and the many variations that come with the role:
She takes really good care of me.
Mom’s always takes care of me and does a lot for me.
Shes the strongest person I know, I always look up to her and I don’t know what I’d do without her.
Beautiful, sometimes mean.
Family I guess, I mean we don’t really have the best relationship but she wants the best for me, and I feel like I let her down a lot.
Rock, because my mother is my rock.
My best friend.
I love my mother—there’s only one mom in the whole world and I got the best mom.
I’m a mother and I think of love when I hear the word mother.
They’re just people that care for you and watch out for you and got your back.
I don’t know my mom is the best there’s no one word you can say about your mother.
My mother is frustrating.
Richness, the feeling of richness.
Amazing, something I wanted my whole life and so proud to finally be it.
Fun, because it’s fun being a mother.
Caring, yeah it’s all about caring of the others.
My mom’s a blessing, she lives two states away and she still drops everything to come and help me.
A blessing, I could say.
Meaning of life.
Mothers—we are warriors, and despite what we tell ourselves, we are most definitely enough!
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and he bends you with His might
that his arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as he loves the arrow that flies,
so he loves also the bow that is stable.
~ Kahlil Gibran
Author: Alex Myles
Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock