This week has been a particularly crazy one for me as a mother. It’s times like this week that I feel as if I didn’t have enough time, energy, and presence to be what everyone needed me to be and to get everything completed. Let’s just say the week included the Sheriff’s Office unlocking my car at a patient’s house so I could get my keys and a mad run in the rain in my PJ’s and husband’s shoes to catch the bus with my 6 year old. Just a glimpse. It wasn’t a smooth week. Something caught my eye this morning that helped re-center my thoughts to where they should be, and I wanted to share.
A few years ago, a friend of ours lost their young child suddenly. It was heart -wrenching for the family and the large community that supported them and loved their child. It was the first time that as parents we had to explain a child’s death to our own children. Following the services, this resilient mother, sent thank you cards and with them, she sent a note with the message below along with her radiant child’s picture.
One of my organizational goals is to to keep my refrigerator uncluttered (I just love to hang on to baby announcements and masterpieces!) but I keep his photograph and this note on the corner of my refrigerator. On a regular basis, I read it to myself, or it catches my eye, and just the vision of it reminds me where I need to be mentally. Even though life moves quickly and we don’t see this beautiful mother or her family regularly, her sentiments and strength are a continual gift to me, and I wanted to share with you….
When we were working on our new website, (Have you checked it out? milestonesandmiracles.com), I came across this quote, “Stop trying to perfect your child, and work on perfecting your relationship with him.” Wow! That hit me! Worrying is a natural part of parenting. Enjoying our children is a benefit. I need to enjoy my benefit more frequently and worry less often!
I’ve had a few meetings this week for work and church that are interestingly centered around the same concept: we as parents are our child’s most important teacher, regardless of what we are teaching them. In discussion with friends, we reminded ourselves that a strong foundation through relationships with our children now helps with the challenges that may lie ahead. Sure, this all sounds “rosey” and I know first hand after a week like this one that life gets in the way, but try to think of it all in smaller steps. Waiting in line at the grocery store is a chance for a hug. Sitting while an older child is in a music lesson, is an opportunity to read a new book with a younger sibling. Dinner at the table together (even if it is cereal) is a chance for conversation about what mattered in each person’s day. We can do it. It might not always look like a rosey perfect picture, but if our minds are intentional our children will feel our love.