Thursday, May 26, 2011

Lessons Along the Way

As a mom, there are many things I had to learn only through experience.
No one can teach a woman everything she needs to know about motherhood.
Some things just need to be experienced!

There are a few things that I want to share with you about some of the things
 I've learned about in my experience as a mother.

As a mother, I have learned:

~ To multitask.
 I know, I know, many of you single girls or happily married DINK's (Dual Income No Kids) 
can multitask like nobodies business, right?
I thought I was good at it before I had kids too. There's always room for improvement.
Here is one recollection of a time when I realized
I had honed my multitasking skills through motherhood:
I was talking to someone (who was dealing with the latest family tragedy) on the phone,
while conjuring up a healthy lunch (on a 20 dollar a week grocery budget) for 6 little girls,
while feeding a baby (who isn't  even "mine") a bottle of milk,
while wiping the bottom of a potty training toddler, 
while one child needed assistance on her math lesson,
and 2 others were fighting over a toy, 
and all the while (still listening intently on the phone)
 keeping myself calm while offering assurance to the person on the other line,
 that all of this (her challenges in life) too shall pass!
Nothing can prepare you for days like these...
(Shew... Thank heaven those days are over!)

~ Not to compare myself to other Moms.
God made me (and you) unique. There is no one else in the world like me (or you).
He also gave us (me and Mr. Takamine) three unique children. Each one different from the others.
Therefore, we have had to learn to deal differently (but as fairly as possible) with each one.
Certain ways of discipline don't work as well for one child as it may for the other.
This fact has stretched me to learn to get to know each of my children as separate individuals.
I love that they are different. This makes life so much fun. Live and learn!

~ To choose my battles.
Not everything is an emergency and not everything requires a fight.
Wisely decide whether it is a mountain or a mole hill.

~ That if I didn't like the way my child was acting,
 I had to look at the woman in the mirror first.
No explanation necessary!
There have been times when I had to stop, re-evaluate, and decide to change
something about myself that I knew would eventually hinder my relationship with our girls.
This took courage, humility, and discipline. I'm still looking in the mirror every day.
There is always room to grow.

~ That I need a balance between "sweet" and "mean".
At some point in motherhood, your child will, in fact, believe you are being mean
 in an instance that is meant only to be a "teachable" moment.
We have lots of those teachable moments in our home.
I've just learned to get used to being "mean" sometimes.
My husband used to tell me
 (when my first daughter was around 1 year old, before the other 2 came along),
 that I was way too nice.  I can assure you, he doesn't say that anymore.
There is a famous Author, Stephen Covey, who says,
 "Begin with the end in mind". I love this quote.
I don't always live by this quote. But, I am inspired by it every now and again.
You hear the cliche that "Kids grow up so fast these days", and you may think ugh,
people say that ALL the time. But here is why... because it's true!
Because, if I begin with the end in mind, I decide what kind
 of person (adult) I want my child to become.
Then I do what I can to get those qualities and characteristics
 instilled in our children within a certain amount of time.
Children need and want discipline. Give it to them.

~ To smile more, yell less, play often, 
 pray constantly and love always!

~ Oh... And a dozen other really important lessons!

I would like to make reference to one of my favorite books now.
The book is called Have a New Kid by Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman.
I had the opportunity around this time last year to be around a lady that I respect.
A wife, mother, leader, and friend.
 She wasn't talking to me, but I overheard her mention this book in conversation.
 And because I respect her and value her words,
 I ran straight out and bought that book the very next day!

I am so glad I did. I pick it up on a regular basis and it has given me
 a tremendous amount of ammunition when dealing with my "ankle biting battalion"!

One morning long ago, probably before I'd had my regular 5 cups of coffee.

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