Five Things I Love About Motherhood

My daughter and me at the American Girl store

May is my time to celebrate motherhood. Sure, it’s Mother’s Day, but I’m also celebrating the birth of my two girls. My oldest daughter and my youngest were born four days and five years apart during the first week of May. Happy Birthday, girls! I want them to know these five things I love about being a mom:

1. Expressing Verbal and Physical Affection. Now that my baby is turning double digits, I know the affection I give at bed-time routines will change. For instance, our 10-year-old cuddle song may be shelved for special occasions. But, I’m not giving up affection, one of the most heart-felt gifts of being a mom. As you age into the teens I’ll still express affection with kisses on the forehead and cheeks, hand holding, hugs and words of love, praise and gratitude. Motherhood connects me.

2. Learning to Like What I See in the Mirror. For the first few years  of your lives, we identified all those physical attributes you inherited. Just like looking in a physical mirror, we noticed similar personality characteristics. We saw many strengths, but often the idiosyncrasies reminded us of our own weaknesses.  After continual angst over my own imperfections, I’ve turned these moments of truth into opportunities for growth—for both you and me. Motherhood builds me.

3. Being Prodded to Learn. The quick growth and learning of childhood required me to keep one step ahead of you. Early on, that meant anticipating the changes you would make and researching what I needed to know to be prepared. Now, we look for those answers together.  Motherhood schools me.

4. Talking About What I Love. I love to talk. I’m interested in what you’re doing, but I also have some experiences I want to share with you. Much of popular cultural holds up only what is exciting and fun, but I want you to also love many things that have a longer-term payoff like gardening, service, spirituality, learning, music, parenting. For this reason, I talk about why I spend my time doing these things. Then you know I’m consciously choosing these things over other more exciting opportunities.  Motherhood validates me.

5. Discovering Who You’re Becoming. Many people talk about the teens and tweens with apprehension. I’ve taken a different approach. This is a time for me to see the good in you and watch you develop your talents and abilities. That goes way beyond just identifying your strengths and then providing lessons to improve. Instead, I love to see what you’ve taken from the patterns and teachings of our family life and to watch how you choose to make it fit you as an individual.

Ultimately, motherhood turns me from myself to others. And I especially love that.

Thanks to Terena for suggesting I write this.

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4 Comments

  1. I can relate to all five of these, but I wouldn’t have stopped to ponder them, or to translate them into such meaningful, wise nuggets. I’m so glad you did!

  2. Rebecca
    May 8, 2009

    I love this! It’s so sweet. Motherhood certainly is sweet and rewarding.

  3. Carrie
    May 17, 2009

    As someone who is not a mother, but plans to be in the years to come, this post was so great in helping me to recognize the joys of motherhood, rather than just the stresses that I observe, and to look forward to that time in my life. Thanks!

  4. An Ordinary Mom
    Jun 12, 2009

    The first couple of weeks in May really are a time for celebration in your home 🙂 !!

    Thanks for taking the time to write this post. What a gem it is. It helps me to pause and remember all the glorious things I am learning in motherhood. And this in turn helps me to be a better mother because it instills within me a desire to do even better.

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