Some friends and I were talking recently about how we find ourselves using the phrase "I'm that mother" a lot. As in, I'm that mother that allows her child to scream at the store. Or I'm that mother who can't control their child at restaurants. Or I'm that mother who bribes their child to be good.
When Laci was a baby, it was a pet peeve of mine to feel the down looks of those other mothers - mothers with older children or mothers with more than one child. I always felt less of a mother because I only had an infant and they were so much wiser and experience. I felt like they were looking down at me for those same reasons.
Well, now I am that mother. I realize that I am not looking down on mothers of infants. But it's more of a friendly nod. Because I know that special secret of motherhood now. It's a secret that I can not tell them but they will know soon enough. I know a lot of people struggle with the change that having a newborn comes with. But to be honest, Laci's first year of life as being a mother was the easiest. Sometimes I wish I could go back to those easy days. The routines. We were so big on routines that first year and I think that is why it was easy for us. And we were ready to make that big change of life. But almost 5 years into, I do feel wiser. I do feel like I have more experience. I know that while every year brings challenges and is harder, every year keeps getting better and better as my kids grow up.
I am now that mother. I am that mother that doesn't think anyone else can love their own children as much as I love mine. I am that mother who doesn't think I can love my kids any more or be any more proud of them and then the next day, I do love them more. I am that mother that knows she has a wonderful family and thanks God for them every morning and every night. I am that mother that thinks her kids are geniuses and everything they say or do is the most wittiest, cleverest, smartest, funniest thing ever. Or the flip side, I am that mother who wonders why nobody else seems to struggle with bedtimes. I am that mother who wonders why nobody else seems to lose their temper with their children. I am that mother who wonder how other children seem to behave at outings.
I now look at new mothers and I do feel like I know that special secret of motherhood. But I can't tell them. I think back to 5 years ago and wouldn't have believe anyone if they had told me. It's not really something you can put into words or share. It's unique to everyone. There is no right way or wrong to do things. We're all just doing the best we can. We are all doing what is best for our family. I never knew how strong the bond was between mother and child. And it grows stronger every day. They are on a wonderful, exciting journey and they will figure it out themselves. Their family will be as unique and wonderful as mine is with adventures, traditions and special moments and their own way of doing things. And I am so happy and excited for new families.