A Letter from Steph to Moms
To my fellow moms,
As we're coming up on Mother's Day, I have been reflecting a bit more about this role in my life of being a mother and some of my important principles I've learned over time.
Our oldest is almost 10 so now that I have almost a decade of being a mom, I feel like there are some principles that I have learned about motherhood that I wish I would have known when becoming a mom.
Nevertheless, you may be able to relate to many of these. If you're a new mom, hopefully these may be helpful for you along your journey as well!
What I Wish I would have Known as a New Mom
- More is caught than taught. I can preach to my kids all day long about character traits such as resilience, patience, kindness, etc. but ultimately where they're going to learn it the best is by watching me live it out and deal with real life situations and they will model my reactions.
- It is not selfish to replenish yourself, you can't pour from what you don't have. For years I sacrificed sleep, alone time, exercise, any form of self care because I felt guilty as a mom working outside the home and wanted to make up for it by sacrificing self care to be with my kids. Ultimately, this made me a crabbier and unhealthy mom. I wasn't showing up as the best mom I could be because I wasn't the best person I could be. I can't give what I don't have so you have to prioritize self care to best show up for your loved ones.
- You are the pillar of strength for your kids. Their feelings matter and if they're scared, uncertain, nervous, you are the best one to help reassure them and give them confidence. Your voice will often be the voice in their head speaking to them as they get older.
- Your mood, attitude, and reactions set the tone for the home. Your kids, and oftentimes your spouse, feed off of your reactions, habits, and words. Make sure your reactions, attitude, and words are what you want reflected in your home.
- You aren't supposed to have all of the answers, you learn along the way. There are tremendous tools, mentors, resources to guide you through each stage. Understand that each stage will have it's own blessings and challenges. Some of these stages you can navigate on your own but some you may need the help of mentors, books, classes, and other tools. Never hesitate to invest in these resources to make your journey easier.
- No one will ever care for your kids like you will; you are their greatest advocate. Sometimes, you get a feeling in your gut that you shouldn't settle for a certain solution or explanation. Keep fighting for your kids, mama! They need you. I've had moments where I knew a doctor's diagnosis wasn't the final word and I kept looking, researching, and assembling the dream team I needed to get my child the best care and future they could have.
- You will never regret the time you invest in your kids. My husband and I have sacrificed social events, work events, and many other things to spend more time with our kids. I have never once regretted that. While it's important to have a balanced life, and friends, and other events to enjoy, I will never regret spending a lot of time with our kids. They are in our home for a short time before they launch into adulthood, I don't want to lose those critical moments.
Being a mom has been one of the absolute best blessings in my life. It has made me a stronger, wiser, and a more compassionate person. However, it's also been much harder than I ever imagined. The journey was never meant to be easy, but it's so worth it. In the good times, celebrate and enjoy this precious family of yours. And in the hard times, hang on, pray, and know that this is a season - it's not always going to be this hard.
Being a mom is some of the most important work we will ever do. It's our way of impacting the world in an incredible way with the beautiful children we send into the world someday. Your role matters more than you could ever know, mama. Enjoy these babies and enjoy this journey - it matters and you matter!