Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

{mom and me, 1983}

The challenges of a baby are many:  waking for mid-night feedings, changing a bazillion diapers, cleaning up spit-up and guessing how to console an and comfort her.  When I had W, I thought a newborn was difficult, but it would only get easier as he grew up.  Now that I have a newborn and a two-year-old to compare side by side, a newborn is easy!  

Don't get me wrong, W is wonderful.  He's a great kid.  Fun.  Adventurous.  Happy.  Smart.  Spirited.  I love that boy.  But I think as a mother's experience grows, so do the challenges of raising a growing child.  I find my vocabulary based around the following words or phrases:  no, get down, shhhh, stop!, gentle, and sit on your bottom.  I wonder how a mother has time to help her child develop beyond keeping him from running out into the street.  Yet I'm learning that this is the time where real parenting is beginning.  It's not just nurturing a baby; now I'm in the position to help shape and unfold W into the boy/young man/man he'll soon be.  And figuring out how to do this is the trick.    

I have been thinking about this talk lately.  The key word from the talk is, "BE."  Who and what will my children be?  I feel like my job is to help them become by teaching them to be honest, to be charitable, to be sincere, to be a listener, to be a learner, to be willing, to be humble.  It seems quite the responsibility as I know actions speak much louder than words.  What I do around my children will say much more than our little talks.

Especially today, I am so thankful to have my own mother whose example helped me learn how to be and become.  
A mother that is successful in raising a good boy, or girl, to imitate her example and to follow her precepts through life, sows the seeds of virtue, honor and integrity and of righteousness in their hearts that will be felt through all their career in life; and wherever that boy or girl goes, as man or woman, in whatever society they mingle, the good effects of the example of that mother upon them will be felt; and it will never die, because it will extend from them to their children from generation to generation.  
                 Joseph F. Smith  
I won't talk to my mom today.  She is in Haiti today with my dad and sister-in-law.  Instead of getting phone calls from her children, she'll be attending church in a hot, humid building.  She'll likely be tired and sore from the previous days' work of unloading and distributing materials for the Haitian Roots school, dresses and white shirts for church members, and basic supplies for many children and families in that devastated country.  I highly doubt she got breakfast in bed this morning.  And I'm pretty confident her bed tonight will not be as comfortable as the one she has at home.  But I do know that my mother wouldn't choose to be anywhere else.

The seeds she has sown through her life are those of service and unconditional love to others, regardless of who they are.  She doesn't just say or teach these principles.  She lives them, breathes them  and loves them.  They are seeds she has planted in each of her children.

Knowing that the real teaching happens through example, I hope my actions are ones my children will want to emulate as they become the man and woman they are meant to be.

Happy Mother's Day, mama.  Your actions have always spoken louder than words.  Thank you for planting those seeds in my life.  Love you!

1 comment:

nate said...

you have an awesome mom. dancing nancy is the best. hope you had a special mother's day too!