Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mother's Day

I previously wrote about entering the Mother's Day essay contest at MotheringHeights.net. In honor of Mother's Day, I am now sharing it here.

But first...to all mothers out there...especially my mother and my mother-in-law...I pray you have a blessed and peaceful Mother's Day.

"I'm a Mom... I Raised A Man"

I am me.

I am an individual.

I am a daughter, a daughter-in-law, a sister, a sister-in-law, an aunt, a niece, a wife, and a mother.

I am not the mother that I thought I would be.

I am not the mother that I thought I would be because before I became a mother I did not know how much being all of the above would affect how I was a mother.

I grew up in a great family with wonderful parental role models inside and outside of my home. I thought I would be a mom that used the best I learned from my parents as well as what I observed from my other role models.

I did not read every parenting book out there. I read lives that lived motherhood.

I did not try to ‘overcome’ my past by being a mother. I tried to pass on the love, respect, discipline and work ethic that I learned from my parents.

I was not perfect as a mother. Our home was not perfect. We have family problems that could not be discussed in public but I did not walk away from those problems. I used them to teach my son that problems are just speed bumps on the road of life. If you keep the right things in focus, you can work through the problems and keep the family together.

I did not, could not, would not give my son every material thing that he wanted. I found a way to be sure that he had everything he needed. I learned to bargain shop so that we could take trips when money was tight, buy new clothes without breaking the bank, and have a home and car that kept us safe and warm.

I did say what most mothers say at some point in their lives. I said “My children will never…”, “As a mother, I won’t…” and “How could that mother act like that, say that to their children? Don’t they know…”

And then my child came along and didn’t fit the mold in my mind. So I was able to understand why mothers don’t say or do certain things and why they do say and do others.

I thought my son would be book smart like me. Instead he was wise in things I don’t understand. I thought he would go to college like me. Instead he works hard and loves his job but isn’t ready for college yet.

I thought my son would follow my religion as diligently as I did. He follows our beliefs and applies them to his life values but doesn’t necessarily do what I thought he would.

I am not the mother I thought I would be. I am better and I am worse. I am better because I taught my son a few good things about finances. My son is more careful with his budget than most young adults his age. He ‘has’ a budget when most kids his age don’t. I am worse because I did not teach him ‘all’ I thought I would about things that are important to me like faith, math, reading, finances and more.

I am better because he demonstrates respect where he works and when he meets with other people. I am worse because that mutual respect is sometimes absent in our home.

I am better than I thought I would be because I have walked along side of my son through all of life’s ups and downs. I have been there when he wanted to talk, wanted guidance. And I have learned to back away when he wants to carve his own path…something very hard for someone people tend to label a ‘control freak’. I have been there as he found out who he is and have encouraged him to find and use his strengths.

I am a mother.

I raised a son.

I raised an individual.

I raised a man that can proudly say “I am me.”


Proverbs 31:28 (The Message)
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:

2 comments:

Connie Barris said...

Beautiful...

Happy Mother's Day

Love you
Connie

Connie Barris said...

You've been tagged.... come and see

Connie