It's not always pretty, but it gets the job done.

It's not always pretty, but it gets the job done.

Need to tame a fly hair? Mom spit. Crumbs stuck to face from recent snack? Mom spit. Fix a squeaky door hinge or glue a toy piece back on with it. It's powerful stuff, that mom spit. It can even show how much you care.







Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Nuggets of Soul Food


To my daughter:

What I think I believe.

Daughter, having you was a dream of mine ever since I was a little one like you.  I always knew I would be a mommy one day.  When I found your daddy, I knew it would be with him. 

I always wondered what it would feel like to “have the urge” to have a baby.  No, scratch that.  I always had the urge, if I’m honest with myself and you.  I just had a checklist in my head of things I had to accomplish BEFORE having a baby if I wanted being a mommy to be as beautiful and perfect as I wanted it to be.  If I had gotten pregnant before those things were completed, things like getting married, or finishing college, or finding a good job, I would have been scared.  Really, really scared.  But, I would have secretly rejoiced at the opportunity to be a mommy.

This was the extent of what I thought about before becoming your mommy.  Other forms of preparation I left to the wayside.  Sure I figured out what furniture I needed for a baby, or daycare would be best to nurture you, or when I was supposed to wean you or how to teach you to sleep through the night.  But, I didn’t think about the big questions, the really important questions.  I figured instincts would kick in and I would just know what to do when the time came up.

What I’m starting to discover, with the help of your daddy, is that I should spend some quality time contemplating these important questions and discovering what I want your daddy and I to say to you.  But, as I think about what I want us to say to you, I realize I have to figure out what I want to say to myself, first.  Because, daughter, I will never tell you something I don’t believe myself.

I understand now what people mean when they say their children make them a better person.  Not only do I want to be a better person for you to look up to, and not only do I want to act a better person in front of you since you are a tiny mimic right now, but I want to KNOW I’m a better person because I want you to KNOW you are a better person.  I have to be the person I hope for you to be.  You are a tiny mimic, after all.

So I’ve been asking myself, “what do I believe?”  Because, I know, one day you will ask me this question.  You may ask because others have asked you.  You may ask because others have told you what they believe.  You may ask because you are curious what you should believe. 

You should always first and foremost question everything until you know it is what is right for you.  Don’t take things at face value.  Don’t believe something just because someone tells you that you should believe that way.  Find out for yourself.

Yet, there are core things that I think are so important for you to know.  These are some nuggets, if you will, of soul food that have always rung true in my heart.

Love people.  Truly, honestly love people. It is too much of a burden to worry about if someone deserves love, so don’t worry about that.  Just give it.  This is called compassion.  Have it.  Pat someone on the back every once in a while if you think they may be feeling down.  Ask people questions about how they’re doing or what they think of such and such event that’s going on, and be interested in their response.  Give what you can to others.  Understand that everyone may be fighting some battle so the day they are not nice to you may not be on their best day.  Do so not because of some potential reward.  Do so because it feels good and because you know it’s right.

Mommy will try so hard to do this, too.  I often fail.  I sometimes curse at the car that cut in front of me on the highway.  I sometimes feel a tug at my heart to help the homeless man on the corner of where mommy works, but I just look the other way.  At work, when a coworker gets short with me, I sometimes get defensive back at them instead of letting it go. But I have to learn to forgive myself when I don't do what I wish I would do better.

Love yourself as you love others.  Just as you must not worry about whether others deserve your compassion and love, don’t question it about yourself.  You are a wonderful and beautiful creation that includes all the things you do perfect AND all the things you don’t.  If you get in trouble for not listening to mommy or daddy, you are still loved.  If you become a musician one day, and you miss a note in the piece you’re preforming, you are still loved.  If you fail, as mommy often does, on loving others the way you want to, it is okay.  Love yourself and know that each failure in your eyes is only a learning experience for the future.

I sometimes fail at this, too.  I look in the mirror and lament at the extra skin on my stomach.  I’ll waste precious mental thoughts on the moments when I mess up and I’m not kind to someone.  I believe it is important to be kind to myself, so I strive to do this more and more each day.


Find the good in each moment.  There is so much good out there for you, little one, to find.  You just have to look for it.  It's beautiful when you see it, too.  Don't let others tried to persuade you it doesn't exist.  Even in the darkest of moments, when everything in your life seems to be going wrong, there is something good to be had from those moments.


It is okay to feel bad sometimes.  It is okay to feel sad or angry.  You have a right to your emotions.  What is important, though, is to experience those emotions, think about them, and then come out on the other side with some understanding.  Don't carry them with you for too long, because they can get heavy.  The longer you carry them, the heavier they get and the harder it becomes to find the good in the moment, in the world, in people, and in yourself.


Take these nuggets, my love, and bury them in your heart, but don't place them so deep that they can't shine to everyone you meet.  Bury them as the foundation for addition of the nuggets you will discover in this wonderful life.

10 comments:

  1. What a beautiful thought. Sniffle sniffle. There must be something in my eyes.

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    1. AW! Thank you. :)

      And it's probably just an eyelash or something that's in your eye.

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  2. This is very beautiful.

    Love. It is always the way to go.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the compliment.

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  3. Great advice! I also struggle with this! But try to do better for my daughter!

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    Replies
    1. Try we must, for that is the number one daily task of any mother!

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  4. That was a great letter to your daughter!

    I especially like two: "question everything" and "experience your emotions but don't let them burden you too long."

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. :) It's nice to see like minded peeps out there!

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  5. Such a sweet letter!

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