I have an incredibly smart friend, Hannah. Seriously, the most important thing I have learned about motherhood came from her.
And it wasn't years ago. It was very recently. Want to hear the earth shattering thing I learned from her?
MOTHERHOOD IS A RELATIONSHIP
You guys. These 4 words have changed me. For so long I thought motherhood was an endless to-do list of things to check off. Literally. And I haven't loved it.
Until I read the above statement. Motherhood isn't a list of things like laundry, dishes, valentines boxes or Easter baskets. Motherhood IS a relationship.
Let that sink in.
And let me tell you where this statement has lead me on my motherhood journey.
I have teens & toddlers. Boy, I didn't see that coming in my lifetime. But, it did. Let's start with the teens. They are seriously cool. You can have deep conversations with them. You can reason with them (somewhat.). They have cool insights and witty comebacks.
However, my teens also have a small case of the lazy. Especially when it comes to chores. I was getting so frustrated every day with asking them if they had done their chores, if they could please do their chores and just annoyed that the chores were getting half done. And it was making me resent my children. Like, I was annoyed with them. And then it hit me. This is affecting my relationship with them! (Thanks, Hannah)
I did what every sensible parent would do. I took away the chores. Yep. I told them they don't have to do them anymore. But that I would appreciate if they saw something that needed to be done and did it. Overnight my relationship with the kids changed. I wasn't annoyed. I didn't feel like I was on their cases constantly.
Now, these are teens who can stand a bit of a mess and don't notice the kitchen floor needs to be swept. So not having to do chores was great for them, but was making it so I had more on my plate. But, I was actually able to sit down and talk with my kids. I was able to see things in them beyond chores and school work.
My relationship has healed with them because I chose our relationship over the to-do lists. A few weeks ago I gathered the big kids and told them that I am stretched really thin and we need to go back to chores. I changed up how they were done and what chores they have. And there is a new consequence in place for if they don't do the chores they are assigned. And you know what, our relationship is still good and I don't have to worry about chores.
Lest I forget those women in this world who have not had the chance or choose not to bear children, you too are a mother. Your relationship with children makes you a mother in their life. The way you treat others and take care of them is your mothering relationship. All women are mothers in their own way through the way they influence the lives of others. You are always welcome here.