If you didn’t already know, motherhood will teach you a few things. It’ll highlight
your strengths and your weaknesses, show you sides of yourself you didn’t even know were there, and open your eyes to things around you which may not have noticed before.
Here are 10 things motherhood has taught me so far. This post contains the first 5 learns – come back next week for the next 5 in Part 2!
1) Children are men and women in the making.
These little boys the Lord has entrusted to my care are men in the making. I have three boys and it can be so easy to get wrapped up in their current stage of life, i.e. nappies, homework, grazed knees, superhero role play, tantrums and toy soldiers, that you can forget that they will one day be actual MEN. My sons may one day be husbands and fathers. Leaders.
Each day is an opportunity to instil in them the things which will equip them for adulthood.
My husband and I are mindful of how we conduct ourselves, knowing that there are 3 pairs of little eyes and ears observing and learning from US. This thought makes me realise just how insufficient I am to teach life lessons in my own strength – I need wisdom from above for this task and I see the Lord helping me with that all the time.
2) Every mum is winging it.
Every mother struggles; it’s just that some are hiding it better than others.
This is by no means speaking negatively about the motherhood experience; there are good days too. A fact of the mum life, though, is that it is probably the most challenging experience you’ll ever have and there’s no manual, you just learn as you go.
Just as you think you’ve got the hang of one area, another crops up which throws a spanner in the works, just to keep you on your toes. We’re all just doing our best but none of us has all the answers.
3) I have to lower my standards – when it comes to housekeeping.
I am somewhat of a perfectionist and tried to continue to be one after my first baby arrived. That wasn’t a great idea; I stressed myself out beyond belief about having the house look immaculate at all times with a baby in tow – which was a near impossible task.
Three kids in and I’ve finally learned that I simply have to let certain things around the house go.
I have implemented a schedule which includes set times for cleaning but this has to be flexible around the needs of my baby.
I’d much rather spend time rolling around on the floor with him, acting out the ‘Guess How Much I Love You’ story than getting worked up about needing to steam-mop the kitchen floor. The schedule definitely helps so, nooks and crannies, I’m coming for you! It just may be a while before I actually get around to you – and that’s fine.
4) Reality is a beautiful mess.
This one is kinda linked to point 3 – your kids don’t care about your home/meals/days out being Instagramable. They just love spending time with you. I feel very strongly that if we mums would just embrace the fact that
‘perfect’ means different things to different people,
we’d all be a lot more relaxed and better able to enjoy this stage of our lives and that of our children.
Social media will have you believe that only once you’re cooking gourmet meals multiple times a day using exclusively organic ingredients, have your make-up on point even though you’re not going anywhere, your house looks as if it came straight off the pages of Ideal Home magazine, killing it at work, kids behaving like angels all of the time, and you are continually in a blissed-out mood, THEN you can be happy.
Erm, sorry, but I’ve found happiness in adoring my family as we tirelessly search for matching socks amid a mountain of laundry.
5) You can do anything but you can’t do everything.
Pace yourself, mama. With extortionate costs for childcare, many mums tap into their entrepreneurial streak and try to get a viable source of income established by starting their own business or working from home. This is fantastic but remember to go easy on yourself.
It’s not all going to be perfect all of the time.
I made time to sit down and write this blog post but that means the ironing is calling to me from across the room. I sometimes want to just spend time on establishing this blog but the very things I write about – being a Christian mum – take priority.
My kids need their mum, my husband needs his wife and God wants my devotion, so I blog and work at working from home when I know it’s not going to be to the detriment of my home, my family or my relationship with God.
When it’s time to pray, pray. When it’s time to read ‘The Gruffalo’ for the millionth time, read it – and don’t feel bad that something else which needs to be done isn’t being done in that moment. You can only do so much so I’ve learned to not beat myself up over the fact that while I’m busy taking care of one aspect of my life, another is having to wait.
I hope you’ll join me for Part 2 of my mummy learns – follow this blog by email to be updated when it gets posted!
Drop a line in the comments to share your own top mummy learns too!