Sunday, May 31, 2015

My thoughts on parenting advice...

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to go to my darling cousin’s baby shower. At the shower, there was a little spot that you could put advice and comments regarding parenting. This advice could focus on routines, feeding, favorite products, do’s and don’t’s, etc... Such a cute idea and a great way to get a variety of insight. But at the same time, opening yourself up and asking for advise can be very nerve racking- especially for a new mamma! My sister encouraged me to fill out a card, and I laughed. What do I know? And then I looked at my two little ones wreaking havoc at the shower and realized, you know what, I do have some insight.... At the time I couldn't think of a whole lot and I quickly wrote a few little thoughts of things I learned in my own experience- noting that every situation and every child would be different. From the time of the shower I hadn't thought much of it, until today.
A sweet friend at church today commented asking how I do it all- I laughed! "Me, do what?!?" She complimented me on my wardrobe, pictures, children, cooking, etc... I was flattered but left shocked! This same friend is someone who I have looked up to constantly thinking the same things- how does she do it all?!? This was someone I watched thinking- why can’t I be more like that- Why can’t I be a stay at home mom… Look how fit she is!... I wish I was a fun mom like her… and all the while as these thoughts have gone through my head, she was saying the same things about me.
Surely, she must be mistaken. Surely she never cries and vents to her husband of all the faults she sees in herself… surely her life is perfect… they definitely must have their lives together since she can stay at home… surely they know some secret I don’t.
Today as we talked, it all hit me. Nope, she isn’t perfect…. Not that she isn’t amazing… BUT she isn’t perfect. She has trials, she has imperfections, and she, of all people was admiring me. We talked and laughed and we both left a little teary eyed. This was something I needed.
 Hearing the words made me realize something that I think as woman many of us forget. We, (you) are amazing! We are beautiful. We are strong. We are daughters of God. And WE somehow everyday forget that little fact- and then we tear ourselves down. We compare ourselves to those around us. We look at all the advice that people so freely give and we criticize ourselves. We aren’t that magazine cover mom… we have messy hair, we wear sweats, we work, we get stressed, we cry, we are not perfect… it is not always rainbows and butterflies- BUT that is a good thing!
Today I realized something that I have always known but often forget- I am not perfect- but I am a daughter of God and HE has trusted me enough to give me two of his children. I too often see my flaws and short comings- I see those 5 extra pounds I want to lose, I see all the hours I spend away from my little sweethearts working- and I cry… far too often I complain to Kurt, wishing that I could be a stay at home mom and snuggle my babies. I see my messy house when I get home each night and I sigh.
I see all these things and I cringe… but focusing on all this negative does nothing and I miss the things that matter most…
Those 5 extra pounds, yes I would love to lose them- but I work my rear end off and ya know what.. those 5 extra pounds let my little ones snuggle in and have some cushion- haha! I hate that I work away from home so often- but I love that we are able to do things that we wouldn’t be able to do as easily if I didn’t work. As I get home and clean up the days mess, I look at all the fun my sweethearts are having, and I know that they are being cared for while I am away. I so easily see all the imperfections and flaws- and I think for the most part we are all great at picking ourselves apart- BUT guess what- no one else sees those flaws. They see a happy hard working mamma who loves her kiddos. And my kids, they see a mamma who works hard for them and snuggles them every chance she gets!

So all this said and done- LADIES! Stop ripping yourself apart and realize that YOU are amazing! So, back to my advise…. Everyone has opinions- some you will love and some you will hate- But take it all with a smile because for the most part everyone means well. The best advice I can give- is to laugh- to smile- to tell your sweethearts that you love them.. Constantly! If your child is happy, healthy, kind, and knows that they are loved more than anything- then I think you are doing a knock up job! 

And because I just heard this beautiful song and just in case you need another extra little reminder or a little boost to know you are totally amazing and totally worth everything... just remember that even when you are having a rough time- we don't see the whole plan at once... but heavenly father does! "Beautiful Heartbreak"
Enjoy!! XOXO until next time! 

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