Mother’s Day is coming up quickly. And, I’m not gonna lie, I love a little TLC – breakfast in bed, homemade cards and the promise of not having to cook, clean or do caretaking things for a few hours.
Over the past few years, though, Mother’s Day has shifted. It’s less about me being a mom and more about those who have influenced me as a mom.
Without a doubt, one of the biggest influences on me as a parent has been my three children. In the past 18 years (Gah! Has it really been 18 years since I was pregnant with my first?!), they have pushed, pulled and moved me in ways I would have never imagined. I have learned to cry without shame, laugh without worry and love without limitations.
This post is not about them, though. It is about the others who have influenced and impacted me both as a parent and as a person. It’s about people like my mom who taught me to live life by my own rules. It’s about my grandmother who always told me that a daily spoonful of honey every day makes life a little sweeter. It’s about my kids’ dad and their grandma both who remind me that family comes in all different shapes and sizes. It’s my step-mother whose presence allows me to remember that just because someone is here doesn’t mean that they aren’t with you.
And, it’s about you. Yes, you.
Whether we have hung out in person, chatted online, passed each other on the street or just collectively know that there is someone out that “gets you,” this year, Mother’s Day is about you and the things you have taught me. Things like …
Awesome is average. It’s way better to be weird, quirky, confused … and it’s the best to just be the messy, magnificent selves… Because me as me and you as you equals a ripple of connection and curiosity in the world that inspires me every single day.
Some things are better left unsaid. I love reading what people post. I get excited to watch the video of your new puppy chasing his tail and seeing the pictures of your kids’ and all their friends as they head to their first prom. And…there are times that I also think, “huh. Maybe that was meant to be said inside their head and not online.” So, thank you for teaching me to check myself before I blurt everything out.
There is no one right way…to parent, to love, to live. Rather there is only the way that works for us. Yes, there are best practices that we can use as a starting point. Then, it’s up to us to craft and create the experiences and the life that work for ourselves.
I matter … and so do you. As humans, we want to know we matter. You have taught me that. It’s in the smile when I pass you at the grocery store, the thumbs up on a post, the deep conversations over coffee. It’s binging on a TV show or consuming a book and then seeing someone else doing the same and you think, “hey, there’s someone out there like me.” It’s also reading a rant, getting a bit angry and realizing, “hmmm, we may not agree on that.” and knowing that’s okay. Because it is okay. You are okay. I’m okay. We are okay, and we are enough.
And, we really are enough. It is learning that, knowing that and feeling that we are enough that nurtures our soul. That’s the essence of motherhood, right? It’s to nurture the child, the person, the soul.
I’m curious, who has influenced you as a parent? As a person?
And, to all of you who have influenced me and nurtured me, Happy Mother’s Day.