Nearing the end of my pregnancy, I would take walks with Abby around the neighborhood and think about what I hoped my babies would be like. For example, I want them to be kind, respectful, adventurous, passionate, smart, athletic, honest, and outdoorsy. I want them to completely understand equality, so much so that they don’t question another person’s differences. I want them to have an open and honest relationship with Ben and I. The list goes on and on, and someday I’ll probably write it down so I can show the boys when they are older, but I never really thought about what I wanted to be like as a mother.
As my first Mother’s Day is tomorrow, I am now reflecting on what it means to be “momma” and although as the boys get older this list will change, here is what I hope for so far. I want to be a momma that:
- raises kind, respectful boys who understand that respect is not something you can demand, but is something that is earned. And to gain respect, you need to give it.
- creates an environment where differences are celebrated, not questioned. My boys can be anything they want (or inherently are), and I want them to think that way of others.
- teaches the importance of healthy living in all aspects of life.
- fosters a playful house where getting dirty outdoors is recommended, and screen time (such as video games) is the exception, not the rule.
- is adventurous and shows the boys that trying new things is empowering, and even though sometimes we fail, we learn from those experiences.
- is not afraid to see her boys fail at times or show them that sometimes momma’s can fail too.
- is not afraid to say no, and understands that children thrive in a home with boundaries and rules, as long as they make sense.
- knows that rules are sometimes meant to be bent or broken.
- shows the importance of helping others and giving.
- gives unconditional love, and teaches boys that affection (and at times showing weakness), is not a sign of weakness, but of confidence in one’s self.
- listens and reflects instead of reacts.
- teaches them independence and the importance of taking responsibility for one’s actions.
- shows the value of family and friends.
- plays games, reads books, eats family dinner at the table, and talks about current events and affairs.
- and most importantly, always loves with her whole heart, celebrates the tiniest of moments, recognizes the need for patience, and lets the little things roll.
Again, there are many more things that I want to be as a momma, but I think this is a good start. I have an exceptional mother and grandmother that laid a good foundation, along with many other “second” mothers out there. I know that I can always lean on any of them for guidance and direction.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mommas out there.
Love, this first-time momma