The She in Me by Miranda Haslam
It is a funny thing, being a mom myself and looking back at the years before I gained my new title. What I viewed motherhood to be and now being in that role. It’s like walking through a door and entering a whole new world. But the world hasn’t changed – my perception has. Here are some subtle things I’ve learned from own mother along the way.
Being gracious doesn’t mean letting people walk all over you.
Somehow, my mother has always managed to be the most graceful woman in the room. Don’t get me wrong, she can be sassy, but even still she manages to pull it off in the most graceful of ways. How does she do it? She is true to herself. At her core, she knows who she is and that is all that matters to her. Arguing with someone over a dinner conversation about something she doesn’t agree with won’t happen if it is going to cause the other person any kind of embarrassment or hurt. It may make her look quiet, or uneducated or even weak to not say anything, but at the end of the day she is the star in every person’s eyes because she was strong enough to care more for someone else’s feelings than her own. In this way, she has unknowingly taught me the concept of empathy. As a child I remember thinking that she must be crazy not to say anything, especially when I wanted to yell and scream at the person with such a mouth. As a mother myself now, every time I am faced with a similar situation I stop and think, how did my mother do that? It isn’t easy! I have learned to balance being empathetic but still making a stand for myself and for my family when it is necessary.
We are all aware that nobody lives in a glass house, and no family is perfect. Quite frankly, who wants to be? I sure don’t. The imperfections are what make our family perfect, because they have brought memories and experiences that are unique to us. And yet, ironically I find that many of us envy those who seem to have it all. Their lives appear to be so wonderful. But sadly, every time I squeeze past those glass doors, I find that it’s never near what has been portrayed. It does nothing but remind me of how grateful I am for the authenticity in our family home. Arguments happen, stains on the carpet happen, meltdowns and broken rules and rebellion happen. If they didn’t, what would we learn? My mother has always been the captain of our ship, pushing us forward even when things are tough. She has never hid the tough times from anyone. She manages to keep our privacy, without hiding the truth even when it isn’t pretty. Now that I am a mother, I sure am glad I have carried this over into my daily life because I definitely could not afford the endless bottles of Windex for all that glass.
They’re blackened and crispy, not quite the yummy, ooey gooey goodness you imagined. Guess what – life isn’t always going to go the way you imagined. But if there is one thing out of everything my mother has taught me, it’s that a little extra milk can fix anything. Burned cookies? Well that just means you’ll need more milk to dip them in! As with anything in life, there is always a way, always an answer, always a path to get you where you want to be, it just may need to be gone about differently than what you imagined. Tender moments like learning to bake with my mother turned into lifelong lessons about real life. I can only hope to be half of the woman she is.
For more great articles from our May Newsletter, check out the Latest Headlines in the left column!