Doing it right

by DaniGirl on May 19, 2008 · 2 comments

in Memes, Mothering without a licence

Chris over at Smartmouth Mombie tagged me for her most excellent Mother’s Day meme. She said:

I think the Moms/Mommies/Mamas in the blogosphere spend more than enough time admitting our shortcomings and not nearly enough time celebrating our strong points. So, I’m suggesting that on Mother’s Day, or the day after, or at least some time in May, you take a moment and make a list of three things that you do well as a mother and either post it in the comments here or in your own blog.

She’s so right. We really have to find more time to celebrate the things we as mothers are doing right. Confident as I am in my mad mothering skillz most days, I still found it surprisingly difficult to write this post – and not only because I am trying to write it while stuffing the soother back into Lucas’s mouth every two minutes while he fusses on the swing beside me. Three things I’m doing right, in no particular order:

  1. I’m fairly consistent with rules, routines and discipline. I set limits and impose structure, and stick by them so the boys always know where the lines are drawn and even what to expect from daily routines. I’ve recently begun to perfect my hairy eyeball, a gift from my own mother, so that I can often convey more effective threat of consequences with a single look than I could with 100 words. But I strive to be reasonable, and try to see things from their perspective before meting out discipline.
  2. The boys know they are loved, by me and Beloved and their extended family and friends. I never miss an opportunity to tell them how much I love them and how wonderful they are. Tristan and Simon both made Mother’s Day ‘stories’ in their classes with fill-in-the-blank statements like “My mommy’s name is” (Simon said, “just mommy”) and “My mommy’s favourite food is” (Tristan said “coffee”). Both of them ended with a variation on the same sentiment: I love my mommy because: she loves me.” Reading that, I felt like I was doing a good job as a mother. Come what may, I promise to always love them and always stand behind them.
  3. I let the boys play, and I play with them — sometimes. I think I strike a pretty good balance between letting them entertain themselves, inspiring entertainment (nothing like the sudden appearance of fresh bubbles to improve an otherwise boring afternoon) or joining in on the fun. I like adventures as much as they do, and love family walks, visits to the museum, the park or the pool.

Phew, that was harder than I thought. First, all modesty aside, I thought I wouldn’t be able to narrow it down to three — and then once I got going, I found it hard to find three good ones!

Now it’s your turn to share with the class. Consider yourself tagged and play along, either in the comments or back at your place. Name three parenting things that you do well.

(Edited to add, after two days with ZERO comments: Really? Nobody can think of three things they’re doing well??)

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 trixie May 21, 2008 at 12:48 pm

Oh, I like yours! I’ll play!
(1) Sam really loves books, so I’ve done something right there. We read for nearly an hour a night and I allow a good mix of my fave classics(Robin Hood), the Learn-to-Read stuff (A Nap for Zap), and the trash he really wants (Pokeman/Power Rangers). Funnily enough, he learns equally from all… Anything in print raises his curiosity.
(2) Sam’s (usually) polite, so the (constant) effort is paying off. How are you? — I’m good, thanks, and how are you? Would you like a muffin? — No, but thanks for offering! I’ve never had a moment’s worry about Sam’s developing conscience, his morals, his values — they’re solid. But the social niceities? That’s tough stuff to impart to a little boy!
(3) Sam is empathetic. That may well have nothing to do with my parenting, but I’m claiming victory here, too. There are few things more satisfying to my mommy heart than to see him peel away from the offensive rush during a soccer game to double back to a lone teammate sprawled on the field — a kid he met yesterday– to ask “you okay?”

And I’m with you on #2 — he knows he’s loved.

2 jennyandtim May 22, 2008 at 1:20 pm

I’m terrific at hunting monsters and frightening them away. So far in six years, with three children, we have had no injuries from monsters, even though they apparently are hiding under the bed, in closets and in many other areas (cue “Enter Sandman”)

I’m involved. Whether it is reading, bathing, pushing a swing, being attacked, or going to doctor/therapy appointments, I think I take time to spend and be involved with my children. While I can’t send as much time as I would like with them, although when they are being ultra whiney it is very taxing, I think I spend quality time with them.

They know they are loved and that they are being raised in a loving environment. I try to display my love to them by the above, and through discipline. Hopefully they pick up on the fact that as a couple we love each other and they have an extended family who loves them. It always makes me feel good to hear “Daddy I love you,” or “Daddy I missed you.”

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