Becoming a Mother
This is a re-post of Joanne’s very popular article and a prelude to part 2 which Joanne will be publishing very soon, so please re-read and refresh your memory as part 2 is even more interesting, informative and educational so don’t miss it, keep checking back… it will be posted very soon, I have had the pleasure of reading it already, I promise you will not be disappointed… Steve Robinson co-author
Written by Joanne Wellington for medium2spirit
“The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before”.
When I was 16 years old, I never made it to high school, instead I gave birth to a child, now I have six children ranging from five to eighteen years. I have three girls, three boys and yes being a mother-of-six I find it very exhausting at times. My mom used to say it doesn’t matter how many kids you have because one kid will take up 100% of your time, so more kids can’t possibly take up much more… hmmm don’t know why I believed that? Never the less I do have to say “fulfilling is what I mean”,, in every way because every minute, every hour, every day, every week of every year I never go short of new experiences and constant challenges and changes as they have grown.
I have grown with, gone through, found and lost so much, my life has indeed been a series of coincidences and sometimes life-shattering events, to get to how I understand and view life as I do now, since becoming a mother. But I know the loses have always been in the best interests of me and my family. My own life experiences have shown me that individuals can and do create their own futures by using the power within themselves Its is case of having to stay strong, positive and true to yourself always holding good intentions every step of the way which will serve you greatly, and we have to for them our children as much as ourselves, learning from mistakes and forwarding yourself for the better on a constant basis. Trust me when you have brought up children, there are memories you store directly in your tear ducts good and bad… I want to share some of my knowledge with you today.
The way I see life is; by learning you will teach, by teaching you will learn because in real terms that’s what motherhood is all about, besides all the rest, which I will talk a little about in part two “Why chose material over life itself.” We, us, our children are both teacher and learner, they us as much as we teach them, and learning is “a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere”. I believe that anyone who stops learning is old, whether this happens at twenty or eighty and anyone who keeps on learning not only remains young beside their children, but becomes constantly more valuable regardless of physical capacity and this is what’s important for our family’s….. Its how its meant to be… It’s not only children who grow, parents should do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours. So much strength and will power is needed for most part of the way and if you have those two besides much love to give you are well on your way to becoming a good mum.
I wanted to be a mother simply because I had such a humongous load of love that I felt I needed to share and I guess I wanted someone to love me like I loved my mom. I also wanted to experience the bonding process that everyone talked about as I grew up and wanted to experience what my own mother called “the most wonderful, terrifying, fulfilling, loving but excruciating thing that life has to offer.” With a description like that I knew I had to check it out and boy it is exactly that.
A lot of things have surprised me about motherhood. The most obvious is how much work it is and how much I don’t like it sometimes. And how hard it is for people to come right out and say that parenting is a raw deal at times. They do mention the incredible highs and the fierce love and protectiveness that balances it all out, but I think the one needs the other in order to BE balanced. I believe in telling it like it is so that fewer women will not be bitterly disappointed when the fantasy they’ve been fed all their lives turns out to be only half-true.
Since I became a mom, my relationship with my mother improved, not that it was that bad but we all go through it at some point. Most teens think life is bad and life is treating them unfair at the time but I want to remove the veils of serenity and satisfaction and reveal what I hold to be the truth: that teenage years of motherhood are physically difficult and can be emotionally devastating. But I have learnt that being a mom makes me appreciate greatly what my mother went through for me and my siblings. Not only did my mother experience physical pain, she experienced mental pain throughout with eight children all in all each having very different personalities between them. I am experiencing the same similar pain with my teens right now talk about karma. I now realize more than ever that when she said she was doing it “because she loved me”, she meant it. Even though I never believed her when I was a teen, she was not just being mean and telling me no to tell me no. There was a reason why she set rules and stuck to them. When my mom told me not to do what my friends were doing, there was a reason and when she took material off me it was a way to make me see reason I now realize that. If only I had listened and had more faith in her words back then. It is known that all these events are what have made me who I am today. Good mothers truly do have their children’s best interest at heart. I appreciate and love my own mom more because of my children .
Despite all the highs and lows being a mother means always giving your child a port in any storm, someone he/she know that’s he/she never has to hesitate to come to with any problem, any issue, any concern and listen to. Someone that he/she knows will always be understanding and compassionate and above all will always love them. I tell my son’s and daughters that I may get mad at them from time to time. I may not like some of the things they choose to do, but my love for them can never and will never waver no matter what and where ever life may lead them. I will always be right there and this will last the rest of my life,.. it isn’t like a pet where you make a commitment for upwards of the next 18 years tops. A lot of people have this vague notion that once a child turns 18 a parents job is done. If you’re one of them I suggest getting a pet instead of having child .. Look making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.
“In all things that you can buy you will get what you paid for… In children, you will get back what values you put into them”.
Really think about the kinds of values you would want to install in your children. The brain of a child is like a little sponge, it will soak everything up, hold it for as long as it can and then it will wring itself back out. If you want what comes back out of their sponge to be clean for them, then guess what? You need to be completely accountable for your actions. If you are not ready for near total accountability, you are not ready to have children. I am a capable human being but there have certainly been times where I have literally curled up into a corner and had myself good, heart-wrenching sobs. In those moments I felt there was no possible way I could continue to go on doing what needed to be done but the important thing “never” stop questioning, because curiosity has its own reason for existing .
Children, unfortunately do not come with “time-outs,” however, their needs must be met. In those times I have always managed to pick myself back up and continue to be the capable human being my children deserve and have helped make me. Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you! and If you have never been hated by your child at some point you have never been a parent. I wont lie I have made mistakes we all make mistakes. It is part of the learning process. Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new to better their life.
Are you the kind of person who can learn from those mistakes? Can you admit that you were wrong to your children in parts when you have made a mistake? If you are not a big enough person to admit to a child you have made a mistake you will lose their respect or is it the other way round as some think hmmm. Well Losing a child’s respect is the first step down a slippery slope towards losing their trust. Once that has happened… It can be game over and leave you thinking what was the point in being a parent at all ..just remember being a parent is “far” from being a game.
” If we allow it our children can “make” or “devastate” our lives “.
Setting the right foundations from the very beginning, from the moment they start watching you is so important, and continuing throughout as they grow. It Is an important part of our parenting involving making decisions, having responsibilities and having duties to perform. Sometimes we may wonder how to achieve a balance with these different demands they are conflicting for many people ….the first step to finding a balance is by holding a positive mind-set around them even through the bad, the bad is there for a reason it helps change our way of thinking for the better but you have to believe this (positive mind set)…love is also a very important need a desire in our children’s life as in ours just noticing this is a simple route to happiness its around us today and everyday…love and balance…there’s a vital investment that pays huge dividends’ in terms of increasing energy, motivation, and inspiration to go forwards investing these values in your children can show higher levels of good emotional adjustment for when they become teens . But in minute cases this is still not enough for some children “its not always your fault” understanding and managing their young raw feelings is very, very difficult for them, this I learnt myself as a teen, I have watched with my own children as they have become teens. I know I’m a good mom and I have tried to the best of my ability to do right by all my children it come’s with the territory and that’s what counts for a lot … through all most important is staying true to yourself always. ..now the father of my six children is a whole new story that I may bring to you one day. Most of us become parents long before we have stopped being children ourselves, its nothing new and if there is anything that we wish to change in the child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could better be changed in ourselves first..! but for now I will continue .
A question that has to be asked WHY do adults constantly argue and fight and put each other down in front of children?.
Its very difficult for children to have respect for Parents these days, when they witness their own Parents have no respect for each other either. Some people do not seem to see that arguments, fights, separations and divorces all stress out children even as early as 2 years old. I have seen the effects for myself with my own family and friends . They do grow up to become insecure and some, but not all are so lost and confused with so many steps parents or half siblings that they feel unwanted, unloved then in teens they become confused and mistake friendship, lust for love and cannot understand WHY no one wants or loves them…girls and boys both feeling as if they are the wrong ones…some even become homosexual due to being scared or of history repeating itself. Some swear never to have children, never to get married, never fall in love or anything. Some land up smoking, drinking alcohol or on drugs. Some feel as if they have no home, feel as they were never a part of a family, end up homeless or end up in gangs as they feel so unwanted at home or are just “getting in the way”.
In lots of cases teens do get too carried away with the way other people around them are, their friends and their distant family members that we bring our children up to love naturally but sometimes they have not quite grasped the importance of life lessons themselves, school life, boyfriends / girlfriends, there reality seems much more easier to them at this time in there life and can very easily make them lose track and slip.. they cant resist to morph there friends. It is very tough for them but sadly no matter how hard we try as the responsible one’s to help them understand facts THAT they really need to know… we “will ” indeed only push them further away and it is up to us to determine when it is time to stop and let them be to find out for themselves whether we may agree or not, it dose kill you to see them grow up and go through these things. But I guess it would kill you quicker if they didn’t. Just don’t handicap your children by making their lives to easy. If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibility on their shoulders. Too often we can give children the answers to easily to remember rather than problems to solve they have more need of modules than of critics this will help them tremendously ready for their own journey.
All in all even when you have done and tried your best with all the knowledge, the knowing and power we may have inside us, finding the balance between being parents and a friend to our teens can be very difficult. We have to face it we just have to realise that we can’t help some people even our own that just don’t want to be helped and when you feel the life force being drained right from your body that’s the time to seek help on a professional level. We must not forget that no one person is the same and we can never expect any of our children to be just like us it very rarely turns out that way. With them out there in the real world as they call it they will adopt surrounding habits without fail for some parents this can be an horrific learning curve it Certainly has been for me with my girls. We have to remember that one day our children actually do need and want to try to have their own independence and it means to them as much as our independence means to us it doesn’t matter whether they are ready or not “A fact all parents have to face” and if our children do get caught up in such situations we can only guide them the best we can. Remember the old saying in spiritual terms “they don’t belong to us they are only borrowed” but at the same time letting them know that yes we are all different and that’s OK. Being the perfect person is “impossible” .
What would be the best gift you could give to your child ? I believe it is love, time, and simple living.
We just have to have faith in remembering the foundations that we set in the beginning from our good intent hearts that one day from the moment that their child is born, that the mother and father in them will also born . That they will see “the light” the love the care and all the good intent that was always intended for them all along… “it will be seen” and will also be installed in their children we just have to hold on stay strong and be there ready to forgive any unfortunate events that have indeed been created and for a very important reason” “their journey” “their life’s lessons”. In some cases letting go is the right choice and as we all know every situation is different life is what it is and what we ourselves make it.. we are who we are we are where we are because of our personal life’s journeys.
“Before I had six theories about bringing up children; now I have six children, and no theories just intelligence through growth and a mothers love”.
Being a mother is a great learning process … if you think about it our story’s are still being written with each new day where you have a chance to collect yourself and prioritise with what is most important to you. Changing your frame of mind for the better can bring wonderful new changes that little bit closer, taking it as an opportunity to reinvent yourself and find a passionate life that is right in front of you. God bless you all as my dad always said and please take care of each new day as you make your countless choices.
How can we be sure we are making the right decisions? Here are a few suggestions:
1. Be aware of where the road leads
Choose intelligence. Not every decision we make is a moral choice. Sometimes its just a matter of choosing between stupidity and intelligence. For example, if you are a young non-smoker and your friend offers you a cigarette, don’t take it. That would be stupid. If your looking for the path to happiness, it is easy to find. Just avoid the paths with signs that say STUPID and follow those that say SMART. Easy enough to do, but you have to remember to check the signs before you start down a path. As Harry Emerson Fosdick wrote, “He who chooses the beginning of a road chooses the place it leads to. It is the means that determine the end.”
Whenever we are at a fork in the road, we will find that one of the paths is easy to take, but that may be the only thing good about it. So, look carefully. You may find that one path tempts you and the other ennobles you. Choice the one that ennobles you. Learn how to withdraw from temptation. For as it is written in the Bhagavad Gita, “Even as a tortoise draws in its limbs, the wise can draw in their senses at will.”
Besides the paths of SMART and STUPID or GOOD and BAD, there is yet another road, and it leads nowhere. It is the road of non-action. It is the path of no-choice. Whenever we face choices and refuse to decide, that refusal is our decision. By refusing, we turn over control to the tides of fate, and instead of shaping our lives, we decide to drift wherever the tides and currents will take us.
2. Do what you can
Decide what you CAN do, not what you WANT to do. Our wants are insatiable. We want to do everything. But how can we become anything if we want to become everything? Choose worthwhile goals that you have time for. Set priorities and focus on the important issues. If you run out of time before getting to the minor tasks, at least you would have done the important ones.
Choose to carry out your responsibilities not because you HAVE to, but because you WANT to. Tasks that you HAVE to do create pressure and stress. Actions that you WANT to do, lead to the joy of accomplishment and freedom from inner conflict. Choose to learn how to WANT to do those tasks that you should be doing. For in the end, you will do only what you want to do. Similarly, when you cant have what you want, choose to want what you have.
3. Look for the good
Some of us may be undergoing great hardships. But no life is so difficult that it cannot be made better by improving our attitude. No matter how dire the circumstances, if you look for some good, you will find it. But how can we find anything good if we occupy our time complaining? The rule to remember is that we are certain to find what we look for. If we search for good, we will find it. If we search for something to complain about, we will surely find it. Choose to search for good. And choose to believe something good can and will happen. Choose to live with hope, rather than despair. Don’t be a dope. Learn to cope. Live with hope.
4. If you cant change the circumstances, change yourself
We cannot choose what will happen to us, but we can choose what happens IN us. That is, we can choose to have the right attitude, one in which we view challenges as opportunities instead of problems. Choose to be positive. For example, although he became confined to a wheelchair after his accident, W. Mitchell (author, TV host, and businessman) said, “Before I was paralyzed there were 10,000 things I could do; now there are 9,000. I can either dwell on the 1,000 I’ve lost or focus on the 9,000 I have left.”
5. Be aware of your choices
When we act out of habit rather than conscious choice, the path were travelling on is a rut, perhaps even a slippery slope. If we don’t want to end up at the wrong place, we have to be awake. We have to be aware and make our choices consciously. The best way to do this is to develop the habit of always looking for opportunities. Scout Cloud Lee also writes about conscious choice: “When we acknowledge that all of life is sacred and that each act is an act of choice and therefore sacred, then life is a sacred dance lived consciously each moment. When we live at this level, we participate in the creation of a better world.”
Look around you. There are great people everywhere. Champions, victors. And they’re all rooting for you. They are voting for you because they want you to win. Unfortunately, you are also surrounded by losers, people who want to drag you down. They are voting against you. Half are for you. Half are against you. How will this closely contested drama turn out? It all depends on you because you will be casting the deciding vote. The ballot is the choices you make. Be careful how you choose!
6. Never Stop Dreaming, Loving, Trying, Learning, Believing, and Being Unstoppable.
If you have love in your life, it can make up for a great many things you lack. If you don’t have it, no matter what else there is, it’s just not enough… like they say, if you don’t have love in your heart, you are the poorest of the poorest, The only way to retain love is to give it away. The love we give away is the love we receive back, Love grows by giving an sharing. Just ENJOY each moment, this moment, no matter what. To embrace and inhale the pleasure, joy, and divine perfection of each and every minute good and bad they are there for a reason”.