Friday, March 02, 2012

Being a mom is ...

On this blog, Stephanie, or NieNie as the world likes to call her, is hosting an essay contest about being a mom.  I haven't really considered entering the contest but I decided to take the challenge that it would be to describe what a mom is.

I am the youngest daughter of six children.  My mom has given herself a very busy life by choosing to have us all and stay at home with us.  She was the mom who knew that messes can be cleaned up and that creating builds a child's mind.  She knew that small things add up to be the traditions we remember and that consistency in teaching built us each a foundation to build our own lives on.  She taught us that we were smart enough, and kind enough, to solve our own problems.  But after we all became adults, she told us about the few times she did stand up for us. When I began worrying about my own daughter's education, she taught me that I should be kind, but that if I don't stand up for my child, no one will.  

Since becoming a mom, she taught me that it's okay to let loose with the kids.  You see, I became a mom just one year ago.  My first anniversary is on Mother's Day this year, which is appropriate because on my wedding day I became a mom to a beautiful little girl and a toddler boy.  I've had to work hard to learn how to have fun and be wild with the kids, while giving them a stable and safe home.  I was worrying so much about them coming and going between homes and the emotional strain they are going through or may go through, that my brain took a sabbatical.  And oddly enough, it was my mom who helped me find my brain, balance, and prioritize so that I could have more joy in the journey.

As a mom, I can see how I could widdle away everyday, thinking about how things are now, how I wish they were, or what the future will be like.  The days could pass with me running around the house, fighting against the eternal pile of laundry or the sink that refills with dishes with just a blink of the eye.  I could even waste time with a routine, that I might have originally thought was the solution.  I've learned that the best thing I can do as a mom, is have joy in my journey because in turn, it will teach my children that no matter our circumstances, we CHOOSE joy.  My mom taught me how to choose joy when I was very young.  It's just one of those lessons you have to use to feel the results.

That's my job now.  I'm a mom.  I teach reading, writing, math, work, fun, creativity, potty training, speech, health, the gospel, how to deal with emotions (including disappointment) but the most important thing I can teach is that on any day and at any time , we each have the ability to CHOOSE joy.  Being a mom is the most taxing work I have ever enjoyed!


Alicia said...

You are not only a superb mother but an exceptional writer. Thank you for reminding me about what I should be. Love you tons Joey.

Katherine said...

This is perfect, Joey. I think you should submit it!