As we navigate the world of pre-teen girls, I find myself repeating the same advice over and over again to Hallie. Be you and be kind and people will love you for that. I’m realizing that I’m parenting a child who is in circumstances I never found myself in. I didn’t see my friends on Instagram having a good time without me. Nor did I have friends with cell phones with the lack of maturity to know how to use them.
I grew up in a day where if you wanted to talk to someone you called them on their landline and chances are their parents answered! Now, I’ve got a daughter who’s already wanting a phone because all of her friends are texting to do stuff and she’s not included. It’s a completely different ball game and it’s a game that makes girls (and even boys and even grown adults) feel like their always losing. So we practice focusing on the good and the kind.
I love what Roald Dahl says – Good thoughts will shine out of your face…you will always look lovely.
She is one lovely girl, lucky she’s our one and only.
I’m always seeking help and advice from those I love and trust on this journey we call motherhood. Sometimes its out of growth and other times out of desperation. And every time I’m left with the same realization: There’s no way to be a perfect mother. Have you met a perfect mother? I haven’t. There’s plenty of women I admire as mothers, but they’re not perfect. Yet when I look at myself as a mother, I tend to hold myself to a higher standard. I expect more of myself. Which of course just lends itself to disappointment.
Instead of perfection, I’m working on being a good mother – even a great mother! A mother who prayerful and deliberately makes decisions for and with my children. I often remind my children that I’m doing my best and that they didn’t come with a single set of instructions. Even sippy cups come with instructions! But I love them more than anyone else and that makes me a good mother. Usually they agree with me – although there has been an occasional, “You are not a good mother to me” yelled as they ran up the stairs. It’s usually in those moments that I’m reminded I’m doing something right!
There’s a family in our area who lost their little girl in an accident last week and ended up having a baby the next morning. And although I don’t know them personally, (Steve knows of them and we have many mutual friends) my heart aches for them. I’ve found myself thinking of this family many times in the last couple days and they’ve been in our prayers as a family.
The have a heavy burden to carry right now. I think our struggles and trials at times are more than we feel capable of bearing and yet I’ve witnessed strong and amazing people endure tragedies with strength and poise. When I hear of tragedies such as this my mind starts to race and I wonder how I would handle such heartbreak? Would I face it with strength? Would I shrink and let it consume me? How would it affect me?
I hope to never find out how I would react to losing a child. My heart goes out to those that have. I hope many can find peace in knowing that “Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.” May we all find the sun rising on our dark nights.
What mother couldn’t use this kind of encouragement?
Elder Holland’s General Conference talk this weekend (Saturday afternoon) was a wonderful tribute to mothers everywhere. Yes, at times, it can be a thankless work, but it’s an important work. And we’re all doing better than we think we are.
We are creatures of comparison. We think we know what we want – and then we see something our friend has and we realize that’s really what we want. We want their house, their car, their hair, their vacations.
And perhaps one day you actually get all that your friend has – and it still won’t be enough because somebody else will have more. We’re always striving to have more. And having more isn’t where we run into problems. Its wanting more in order to elevate ourselves or our status above others.
It’s something to think about. I know I’ve spent some time reflecting on myself this week and even caught myself in a few instances where pride started to seep in. What’s in my heart? What’s my motive? The better I understand it within myself the more chance I have of changing my thoughts and behavior. There’s never a shortage of things to work and improve on!