My mom taught me so much! And there’s lots I continue to learn. Thinking back through this year, there’s 3 things I’m so glad she taught me!
1. Cooking – I cannot tell you how often I’m so glad I can cook! And I can do more than follow recipes, if I don’t have the right ingredients I improvise, I add spices as needed, and I’ll just wing it when I feel like it. Having confidence in the kitchen is such a blessing. I remember being at the counter helping bake, cook, and making a mess right along with my mom. Now, I let my kids do the same!
I’ll never forget the time I mixed up this beautiful tri-colored pound cake (in a bundt pan). I was in my early teens so fully capable of following a recipe. That cake was lots of work, and having three colors just made it more complicated. I successfully mixed it, baked it as instructed, and then set it on the rack to cool for 5 minutes. Next, continuing to follow the directions, I tipped it over and dumped it out onto the rack.
Only problem was, it wasn’t done. There were 3 colors of poundcake batter dripping down the counter and making a puddle on the floor. I cried, and I know my mom felt exactly as I did (even though she wasn’t crying). She had to clean up the mess. And then, we had a lesson on how to check a cake for doneness BEFORE tipping it over.
2. Sometimes Life is Hard – But you don’t give up. Life is constantly frustrating, irritating and just downright hard. But that’s all part of life, and definitely part of mothering.
Thankfully, that usually balances out with fun, love, and successes! You just don’t give up when things get hard, just keep going and things will come out ok in the end.
3. My Emotions are My Choice – I don’t mean I don’t have them. I can’t always choose when they’ll strike. But, I can be responsible for them. There are days I count to 10 before answering any questions. And there’s times I’m just tired, hungry, and crabby – and everyone knows it. That’s what coffee and chocolate are for!
Some days it’s really hard, but I can’t blame anyone for how I respond to things – like right now I would really like to tell the girls exactly what I think about them interrupting my writing for the 20th time instead of playing quietly in their room! Instead I calmly gave two choices. They can play quietly in their room until I come get them or they can take a nap like their Brother. We’ll see how long it lasts, but hopefully at least until I’m done writing!
With 2 girls I’ve started teaching emotional responsibility already. It’s ok to be mad – but we do not throw things or slam doors when we’re mad. It’s ok to be upset and it’s ok to cry – but we don’t yell at siblings or say unkind things because we’re upset. It’s not about not experiencing the emotion but it’s about remembering that no matter how I feel I still have a responsibility to be kind and considerate towards others.