Monday, March 17, 2014

Confidence, Humility and Other Personal Attributes

If a person is confident in what they are doing, very little will allow them to see that a different perspective could be useful.

I make it a point to be a confident but receptive parent and wife. I have the good sense to admit if something simply is not working and move on. I will always want what is best for my children even if that means I was wrong. And believe me, I have been wrong many times. I am accepting in my flaws so that I may continue to do better. I am, however, confident enough in my choices that I do not need to defend them to anyone.

I exercise humility daily, this is how I grow. This is how I grow as a mother, as a wife, and as a person. It is imperative to me to continue to improve myself in whatever areas reveal to me that improving is desired.

When I am feeling insecure or judged I first acknowledge that I am my own worst critic and I am probably feeling this way for a good reason. I also recognize that comparing myself and what I do to others is not always relevant or a very good idea. If someone invokes thought and consideration into us, it often means something and should not be dismissed. When I am being a blindly confident parent I do not leave room for progress and that is not fair to anyone. Least of all is it fair to my children or to my husband.

If I am not working toward self-development I am standing motionless. I do know that I want to improve, always. I will also change my mind often and that is acceptable too.

Battling Control

I finally understand what it is that sets us apart from other families and leaves me thinking and rethinking what we are doing.

Our personalities collide. I am strong willed, stubborn and demand reason. My husband is quite the same, rejecting most authority aside from his own. It is only natural that we either raise children who follow command and trust without doubt or we raise children who demand justice and reason; kids who are always questioning of situations.

I don't want my kids to be followers I want them to be confident and lead themselves. But they are young and they don't really know how this sort of personality affects those around them. My kids run around trying to tell each other what to do. Trying to take charge of situations and each other. They do this while resisting each other and resisting the parents in the chance event that we're being unfair or unjust or bossy.

They need constant reassurance. They need to know "why". My kids need to know that when they're requested to do something it is to benefit them not control them. Not to resist something just because they can, after all, "those are your teeth kiddo, not mine".

I've not always been the patient parent I try to be now. This gives them reason to doubt me. I deserve that. They doubt each other because they are young.

For them, you must be willing to show respect to gain respect. If for some reason I am impatient or unappreciative (or just short or moody) they do not trust that my intentions are good. This starts up a cycle.

I apologize frequently. If I am a jerk or having a bad day I explain myself.

Our personalities require a lot more maintenance to formulate strong relationships. It makes me wonder if this is something that everyone needs to assess within their families to ensure they are building strong relationships too. To ensure that they are meeting the needs of themselves and others.

I need to maintain "control" over something but not people. I plan parties, meals, chores, outings, I balance the bank account and I maintain control and order in ways that allow me to express myself and ways that don't hurt anyone else.

My husband and I agreed that everyone needs their own "job" to control and allow them feel like they have purpose. So they are less likely to boss each other around because trying to control people never works. Especially in a family full of strongly opinionated leaders. I compared it to being like certain dogs that need jobs to keep them happy.

Perhaps this is nothing new. Finding ways to fine tune our family to ensure happiness for everyone is quite important to me.

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”  - Ernest Hemingway

Friday, March 14, 2014


Let me just jump right in...
I often do not feel like I am doing enough. I wonder, do I need more? I ask if I could be doing something better or different that it is best suited to all of our needs.
I wonder is being a mother enough? Is being a wife enough?
Are my abilities to do the things that I do enough? 

It is natural to question these things. I think we all do it. No matter what stage in life we are in or what our goals and paths may be.

I've been reassuring myself, that YES it is enough. I have a list hidden in the bottom of my mom-stuff check lists, meal plan sheets, shopping lists, homeschooling notes, and other such things that reminds me of all the things that I do.
Those things are enough. 

I'm not working outside the home but I am more than accomplishing a full time job at home.

My children appreciate their favorite clothes being washed and dried and ready to wear again. Just today I heard an exclamation of excitement come from my littlest child, *gasp* You washed my shirt! OH Thank you Momma!" and my heart melts. Last week Cambria shouted out, "YAY!" at her stack of clean dresses. When did this happen, when did my kids suddenly become so appreciative!? 

Or was I so irritated or maybe just bored in the past with these tedious things I failed to notice or allow room for such happiness to ensue? 

When I do what I do in love and care I reassure myself that what I am doing is truly worth feeling complete with. When I cook I do so with care and understanding that my family needs proper nutrition and I am meeting those needs!That's pretty awesome and I'm not trying to make a bigger deal out of the small things either. I'm extremely passionate about healthy eating and lifestyle so that's actually a big one for me. Meal planning and cooking for maximum nutrition and digestive qualities is enough.

When I am busy day-to-day raising my kids I'm doing exactly what I need to be doing. We're doing activities and reading books together. Searching the internet for answers and living life together. I am here to guide my children and to learn with them. I don't want to control them or live a stressed out life. It takes a lot of balancing and communication and respect to maintain the life I want with my family. It is totally worth it. This time last year I couldn't have imagined our life as it is now. This too is enough.

Forward motion. Always.

And then I try to maintain my sense of me at the end, in the wee hours of the morning. With straining eyes and stumbling fingers, I try to press on to read ONE more article. To watch one more educational video or research the nutrient content of ... mangoes. After I have inevitably learned what foods not to eat with mango.

Some days I like to shut it all down. On those days, I'm doing what I need to do for my soul. For my kids, because sometimes a mom just needs to stop and smell the roses. It is enough. 

Whatever you do is enough too! Even when you're still working toward goals and even if you're not where you want to be yet. Forward motion. 

You are enough.