Author: Jody from ClevelandMommies.com
I tell myself this all the time: “it can only get better, right?” Like when my daughter brought home a D on a test, I say, “it can only get better,” or when the dishwasher/stove/microwave/other random appliance breaks down I find myself saying, “it can’t get any worse”.
Personal experience will allow me to tell you that having an almost thirteen-year-old daughter is hard work. She just got a cell phone and if the thing isn’t working right, she flips out. Next year is her first year of middle school and she is already freaking out about that. I get tired of the attitude, the “what” or “I don’t wanna” that comes from her mouth, but at the end of the day she always says something to make me smile and remember why I brought her into this world.
I look back on the last thirteen or so years and I wonder, could I have done things differently? And if I could, would I really go back and change it. I really don’t think so. Motherhood has blessed me in so many ways that are hard to describe. I have learned patience, trust, faith and most of all humor. I have learned to laugh at my mistakes as well as my daughters; I have learned to see things through her eyes and not the eyes of an over-protective parent. In doing so, I have realized that she is a great kid with so many wonderful qualities.
Take, for example, the days where I am sick or cranky. She senses my negativity and is right on the ball when it comes to trying to either stay out of my way or make me feel better. She always knows when to make me a cute little card or use her artistic talent in some way, shape or form to make me smile. The thing is, she has been doing it for years and when I sit and think about it, I guess that means I have taught her well – right?
Life has been challenging for us over the years, I have been pretty ill and haven’t worked since May of 2008 (right after Mother’s Day), nor have I had a stable residence, but the one thing that I continue to do is provide for her. I make sure I always have her Flamin’ Hot Cheetos ® around and that she has her face soap, help with her homework food in her stomach, a roof over her head and a lot of love. And at the end of the day, I don’t think that I could ask for a better child.
Family life is full of ups and downs as well as a lot of in-between. When the downs come around, I find myself being reminded that it can only get better from here. I encourage all moms this Mother’s Day to know that it is rough being a parent whether you are single or married, living at home or with a friend/family member. At the end of the day all that matters is that you provide love and care for your child - they will remember you for that. Gone are the days of criticism and bickering, and in are the days of encouragement and gentleness.
I find that having to separate my day-to-day life from my life as a mom is hard, and while me saying that may not make sense to you, it does to me. I leave behind the trials of looking for a job, I walk away from the stress that sometimes comes with volunteering, and I don’t bring home a bad day at the doctor’s office or anywhere else I go. When my daughter gets home from school, it is all about being a mom and what is good for her.
Being a mom is a full time gig. I don’t get to take time off for good behavior nor do I get any sick days. But I do know that when the going gets tough and there is a lot to do and things aren’t quite going my way, it can only get better.