I think and overthink my mothering all of the time. Am I too hard on them? Do I pay enough attention to them? Do I judge too quickly? Do I show my pride? Do I make them feel badly that they don’t have an artsy mom who bakes? Are they bummed about not having a dad? I’m not super cool, I’m not trendy, I’m not a fashionable or super crazy fun mom. I’m a mom who works a lot, over-commits her time to things, is terrible at budgeting, gets too anxious at ball games sometimes….I’m imperfect in so many ways.
I worry about the long term affect of so many things, big or small. It’s ridiculous, this being responsible for the growth, development, well-being, safety and sanity of another human being.
Sometimes, I think that having soon-to-be-20-yr-old twin stepdaughters has taught me something. And, I realize it truly has. Because I couldn’t give them much as a “parent”. But I think we did what we could and learned that the one thing we did give was love, belonging and connection. We promised them we’d always be here and we’d listen to them as judgment-free as possible (not an easy task and I wasn’t always successful at the judgment-free part). But we genuinely let them know they could trust us and would always be part of us.
Then I flashed back to my prior post about our Family Mantras of Connection here in this post.
Those are the things that I truly think matter the most as a parent. I mean, I feel like such a screw-up parent so much of the time. I get worried about my kids’ behavior and wonder about what type of person they will be or how they will turn out. But then, they cuddle up to me and let me talk to them about their day. They remind me that they still feel the safe, secure, trusting warmth of their mommy’s hugs.
My promise to this in my post 1 year ago and still today is this:
I will be as true to them as humanly possible.
I will listen, truly listen with my heart and soul.
I will see them as truly and authentically as possible.
I will allow them to feel and express those feelings without judgment.