When I Grow Up I Want to be More Like My Daughters
It’s been a while since I’ve had a job interview, but one of the questions usually asked that I dread is … what is your weakness? No one ever wants to answer this question. Who wants to divulge a character flaw to a person you want to impress? I have usually found a way to share some weakness of mine but then throw out a strength to change the subject.
As a mother, no other job makes you want to hide your weaknesses more than this one. But speaking as a mother, no other beings can find your weaknesses faster than your children. The beautiful thing about parenting and motherhood is that even though your children know exactly how to push all of your “hot buttons” that display those weaknesses, they’re about the only ones that can show you how to overcome your weaknesses and grow up.
So since I already have the job as “Mommy,” (and the best job ever, I might add) I will reveal to you a few of my weaknesses. I can be stubborn, I hold onto grudges longer than I should and I am slow to apologize. This isn’t a horrible list, but one I wish could be tweaked a bit.
Funny things happen when you become a parent. I heard about it a lot before becoming a mother, how parents change priorities and will do anything to make the world a better, happier place when their children arrive. It is so true. Yes, before I was a mother I had road rage. Yes, before I was a mother, I had a bit of a potty mouth. Yes, before I was a mother, I could be quite impatient, one-sided and self-centered. All of these characteristics didn’t just magically disappear, but I am certainly aware of them more now. And the credit I give, for helping me open my eyes to my flaws, goes to my daughters.
When you have children, you think, oh, will she have my humor, will she have his intellect? There are some things that are passed along from parent to child, that’s just how it works. But my girls are definitely their own people, and I admire them so.
Something my oldest daughter has taught me is the gift of an open heart. This little girl, from a very young age (as if three wasn’t young enough), has displayed such warmth, kindness, care, and instant forgiveness. She walks around with her heart on her sleeve. She’s an old soul and a person that really truly wants you to be happy. She asks how you’re feeling and means it. If you don’t seem yourself, she wants to do whatever she can to cheer you up, whether that be flash that little perfect smile of hers or bring you a stuffed animal to cuddle. She shows concern and real understanding of emotion and forgives you almost instantly if you let her down. In this day and age of “me, me, me,” This little girl is definitely someone I would like to be more like.
My younger girl, my baby, has a different gift to give. She has the gift of cheer and happiness. Though she is only eighteen months and still evolving, from the get-go this girl has been happy. I don’t mean happy in a sense that she’s constantly smiling and never cries or never mad (she is a toddler!). What she does best, that I wish I could do, is “get over it.” No matter how frustrated she is for not getting her way, or sad she is because of not enough sleep, or mad she is for not being understood, there is a smile right on the other side of that frown. She is so easy-spirited and easy to forgive and forget. Her smile just lights up. And her enthusiasm for experience is magnetic. I become mesmerized by her ability to “forget about it.”
I really look forward to the years ahead with them. I wonder how they will change and how they will evolve with time and their surroundings. I hope that the strengths they display today will be long-lasting. Hopefully I can encourage these strengths and, as their mother, they will listen to me. (We’ll see how long that lasts!)
There is a saying I have that I say a lot, “how lucky am I?” I ask myself this all the time. How lucky am I to have this great gift of being a Mom? How lucky am I to have two healthy, happy daughters? How lucky am I that I get to spend my days teaching my daughters how to live and love life and themselves. How lucky am I that the real gift is what they are here to teach and show me and how they are helping me grow.
This isn’t luck at all … this is a blessing.