Sunday, June 1, 2014

The Choice of Motherhood

Sometimes I write, and it seems more like a confessional than a blog. I'm always honest, but never hurtful. I wrote this on Mother's Day, but waited to post this because I didn't want to offend anyone or upset any Moms out there. So here it is now, my original Mother's Day post.


Every year on the second Sunday in May we honor Mothers all across the country. We buy cards, flowers, and gifts of love showing our support and undying love and devotion to our mothers, grandmothers, aunt, and women who have influenced us as only a mother would or could do.

Going through any card aisle you can read a million cards with all sorts of sentiments that range from very mush and sappy to simple and nondescript.

There are flowers and bouquets of all colors and price ranges.

There are brunches you can attend, and gifts of chocolate strawberries that can be delivered to Mom. There is no end to the possibilities to say "I Love You, Mom!" through a gift or bouquet.

Despite everything we attempt to say on Mother's Day, for me the little things we don't say speak volumes louder. What we don't talk about on Mother's Day is the choice to be a mother. I can't think of a choice in life that defines or redefines- depending on your age- the rest of your life more than the choice to be a mother.

I think we overlook the fact that choice isn't just about whether or not to have the child, but it's about how you will raise that child. The sacrifices you are going to be willing to make for that child; the changes you will make to your life to accommodate every need of that human being.

It's no secret if you know me or have read this blog before, I started motherhood young. I was pregnant at 19 and the Princess was born when I was 20. I was married and so the "choice" to keep the baby was never really discussed as it was always a resounding "Of course we are having the baby!" We were truly ecstatic!

However, the conscious choice I did make was to make sure that NO MATTER what I would always be a good mother. That was a choice I made.

I made sacrifices, changed plans, and revised career tracks to accommodate this beautiful being I brought into this world. I made certain she was always first in my world and nothing else mattered. The same was true for when my son was born. His early education was a challenge and I learned more about mothering than I thought possible, but I made the choice to be a good parent. I have poured my heart and soul into my children, and the pay off has been immeasurable.

I have a great relationship with both my son and daughter. They are warm, kind, smart, witty, responsible, head-strong, courageous, compassionate, and everything else a mother could hope for in her children. I truly believe they are a direct reflection of the choices I've made during the journey of motherhood. My good choices have resulted in great children!

I don't say this as a pat on my back or to champion myself as an awesome testament to motherhood.

I say this because not every mother-child relationship is quite as blessed. Not every mother made the choice to be a good mother, and I get tired of people dismissing poor parenting with the banal excuse of "they did the best they could".

Did they? Did they really make the selfless sacrifice of being a good parent? Did they really make decisions that would help their child grow in a loving family? Or did their selfish choices hinder their child's growth? Were they a good role model for their children? Did they do everything possible to be the best version of themselves they could be in order to be the best parent possible?

Few people have the courage to ask themselves these questions. Fewer people ever want to find out the answers.

So tonight before I close my eyes on Mother's Day 2014, I ask myself "am I making a choice to be a good parent?"

The answer is a resounding YES!

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