09 October 2006

Moral of the Day Monday

Moms have no secrets. Although we like to think we do. The secret to unchipped dishes (cupboards filled with melanine/acrylic in all its cool modern varieties). The secret to a quiet toddler. The secret to a spotless house. The secret to a well balanced family diet. The secret to no cavities, ample sleep and complete obedience. And yes, chances are someone else has a dang good chocolate chip cookie recipe, too.

The truth is, we all have our formulas for success. And we are all successful in different areas of parenting or housekeeping or family health. I for one am great at loving children, but not disciplining them... getting them immunized on schedule but not taking them to the dentist... throwing a memorable, but usually overscheduled birthday party... remembering the allergy medication, but not their vitamins.

Moms are also pretty easy to read, although we wish we weren't. Behind the pursed lip smile is the mantra "I think I can, I think I can." This may be accompanied by a crying toddler. The wary eyes/black circles but still glowing expression belongs to new moms. As do the thoughts, "Please excuse my dreadful appearance and the growth that remains in my midsection." The "mission in mind" expression belongs to veteran moms. There is a quick and hurried, but organized and confident way about them. The zoned out expression from any and all moms means it's time for a new school year to begin! Or Christmas break to end. Not that any of us would like to admit we grow tired of our children from time to time. We're all trying to survive. We're all hoping to thrive.

And moms can be spotted pretty easily, but we'd each like to think "I don't look like a mom." We know not to wear white "stain magnet" shirts. Or black "snail trail highlighting" shirts either, for that matter. There are a few "mom jeans" still in existence - but they are an endangered species thank goodness. There is the mom bag on the shoulder, these days cleverely disguised as a purse. There are the mom cars - minivans, SUVs, complete with wrist spranging amenities. Yoga pants/capris, Old Navy tees, cute tennies/flip flops and "mom dos".

One thing not kept secret is how well moms can multi task. It is not uncommon to see a mom wearing one child, pushing another in a shopping cart and successfully balancing 2 weeks worth of groceries while singing "Old MacDonald" (to keep whining at bay, of course). They are also completely equipped with snacks and binkies and other distracters. Hence the need for the mom bag with the bottomless pit. At home they are capable of calming a fussy baby while cooking dinner, overseeing homework and blogging. ALL at the same time. ;)


My mother-in-law gave me some great advice this week. Truly one of the greatest "momisms" I've ever heard. We were talking about each of the kids, their struggles and their successes. I was beating around the bush for some encouragement because I don't wear my weaknesses on my sleeve very well. She said her mother - one of those highly admired supermoms - was once asked "Which of your kids do you love the most?" And she simply answered, "Which ever one needs me the most at the time."

While not one of us may hold the secret to a perfectly blissful parenting experience, we likely have some secret tidbits of wisdom brewing, just waiting to be unleashed.

And that's the moral of the day.

16 comments:

smartmama said...

moms rock- seriously- we have so much more than meets the eye- and in todays world being a good mom is not small feat- we work tooth and nail to give our kids, love, support, values, and parts of ourselves!

EmLouisa said...

Beautifully put. I love your blog. You make me think and feel. I need that occasionally. :)

utmommy said...

What a great blog!! I know I'm grateful for my mom, and I hope someday my kids will be grateful for me. We really do have a huge responsibility. And it's not an easy one.

Anonymous said...

Writing a blog is sometimes a very tough thing to keep fresh. I like the way you have been posting and hope you can keep it going.
Beth
Super Fitness

beth said...

This made me feel so proud to be a mom today. Pause while I pat myself on the back. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I love that quote "which ever one needs me the most at that time" thats awesome! I've been asked which child is my favorite and I never know what to say "I don't have one" never seems believable for some reason.

Thanks for sharing.

itybtyfrog said...

Fantastic post. I definately have learned to be a multi-tasking wizard since becoming a mother. And I never thought about the white and black shirt thing....those are the two colors I wear 90% of the time. No wonder I am always messy!

Cmommy said...

Lovely writing, timely topic. :-)

ps: I 'tagged' you in my post about being tagged....{}

meta said...

Lei,
I love your inspiring words. Simple stated and uplifting! Something every momma needs.

FrogLegs said...

That question, at the end... I can answer it easily. Only have one kiddo. :) Lovely post- as always... and I HATE how see-through I am now, LOL!

Lei said...

Frog legs - not my intent, lol! I want us to feel that we don't have to worry what the other mom is thinking because it is all common knowledge! But, we each do have our own positive strengths to share. :)

Kristen said...

So very, very true. Every word of it. Moms--all of us--are amazing!

Anonymous said...

Lei you do such a great job on your blog! What a great post, something that really makes you think! Thank you!

Nutella said...

Thank you for that. I hope I can be or do any of those things...someday!

Morning Glory said...

Really nice thoughts on this. I like the advise from your mother-in-law.

lazymama said...

so true..so true!!