The Mother I Strive To Be

Some of Vancouver’s top mom bloggers decided to take a ride together and talk about the mothers we hope to be.  Have you been joining us?  The full schedule of past and future posts can be found at the bottom of this one; as well, if you want a FREE ebook of all 11 submissions, it will be available after this train pulls up to its last stop!  Today it’s my honour to give you a peek into my maternal dreams!

The mother I strive to be today is not the mother I was hell-bent on being before I actually gave birth.  And in the last almost 6 years of motherhood, my ideals have been fluid; some of my aspirations proved worthy of the time I invested in them while others, frankly, didn’t do much for me and my family.  So I chucked them.  For example, I once swore I’d never let my children see the inside of a McDonald’s, and that I’d only send “greens” bars in my kids’ school lunches.  Though I still have parameters around their nutrition and cook the majority of our meals at home, I have yet to grow our own food or raise our own chickens.  The difference between pre-baby mama thoughts and post-baby mama thoughts is that I am not horrified at what I’m “not” doing.  In fact, I’ve built a whole business around celebrating strengths and finding balance – and I’m my own guinea pig.  So, here goes.

In this very moment, the mother I strive to be is:

  • Patient: When the little feet can’t keep up, when butterfingers cause milk to splash or spray or glasses to shatter, when eager mouths want to talk about everything under the sun when they should be eating or washing up for the next “thing” in our schedule, when yet another request for building a castle comes my way…I ask the God of Patience to remind me to BREATHE.  And I want to more easily remember how those little feet and fingers grow quickly – and that one day, (no – this won’t really happen, right?), I’ll have to pry for information about their day/relationships/feelings.
Inaya, 20 mos, practicing her penmanship...on her arm.

Inaya, 20 mos, practicing her penmanship…on her arm.

  • Approachable: I envision my 15 year old daughter and I laying down together on her bed, arms entwined, hair fanned out (our hair looks like a Pantene commercial, actually – quite gorgeous!), faces turned toward each other in sweet confidence.  She tells me about “this boy” and I smile and ask questions.  Then I remind her he’s only after one thing.  Oh no, wait.  That might kill the conversation.  But somehow, in a really cool, approachable way, I’ll work that in.  I’ll keep an open mind when she says she wants to go to the movies with him, even as my stomach ties itself in knots.  So, if that’s my goal in another 9 years, then the mother I am today should reflect that.  I’m trying; I ask her who she played with and how she felt about such and such.  And every morning I climb into bed with her, put my face in her soft tresses and breathe in her gorgeous scent.
Last night when I checked on my sleeping angel - she takes my breath away.

Last night when I checked on my sleeping angel – she takes my breath away.

  •  Healthy: I can’t think of a bigger incentive for being healthy than experiencing a long, vibrant life with my family.  I want to see them grow up, and show up in this world as the unique individuals they are.  Whatever they choose to do with their lives – get married, have children, start up businesses, or something so wild that I can’t even come up with it right now – whatever they choose, I want to be there.  No, not just be there.  I want to be their loudest, wildest cheerleader (if I could pull off a skirt that short, that’d be a bonus!).  I want to shout encouragement and never lose my breath.  I want our family to bond over Nature in a more hands-on, active way.  And most of all, I want them to learn to take care of their bodies, too.  I think I just “talked” myself into a new exercise regime.  Funny how that happens.
Aariz and I taking on a waterslide at West Edmonton mall as I fought my germophobia the entire day.  (Do you know how many people swim in that pool??)

Aariz and I taking on a waterslide at West Edmonton mall as I fought my germophobia the entire day. (Do you know how many people swim in that pool??)

  • Unconditional love: As a mother, I already know I have unconditional love for my children; I think my biggest job is to show them that daily.  My words, my actions, my body language should all reflect that.  Mistakes are just that.  Asking them for forgiveness and granting them theirs should come as easy as breathing.  Demonstrating empathy goes a long way in shaping these wee ones.  The mother I strive to be always remembers that children, of all ages, are like cups that need to be filled daily with kind words, loving actions and loads of hugs and smiles.
A squeeze with Aariz this past Christmas <3

A squeeze with Aariz this past Christmas <3

The mother I strive to be also remembers to show herself that same unconditional love and empathy – especially on the days when being patient, approachable, and active are difficult.  Or when smiles end up as frowns.  It’s ok.

Nobody’s infallible; I certainly don’t want to teach my children otherwise.

 

Don’t miss my mom blogger friends’ posts!  Here’s the schedule:

Tues, Jan 22 – Tairalyn from Little Miss Mama
Wednesday, Jan 23 – Melissa from The Thirites Grind
Thursday, Jan 24 – Amy from The Connections we Share
Friday, Jan 25 – Julie from JulieNowell.com
Monday, Jan 28 – Eschelle from Mumfection
Tuesday, Jan 29 – Taslim from Let ME out!!
Wednesday, Jan 30 – Katie from World by Smith
Thursday, Jan 31 – Lori from The Write Mama
Friday, Feb 1 – Kristina from Swank Mama
Monday, Feb 4 – Brandee from One Crazy Kid
Tuesday, Feb 5 – Jessica from North Shore Mama
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Showing 13 comments
  • eschelle
    Reply

    such a lovely post, I know I will feel the same way about girls when my boys hit that age. If that makes you feel any better you know the mom on the boys side is freaking out just like you lol make friends and if you don’t like him become BEST friends with her. It will be a short lived romance lol 😀

    • Taslim Jaffer
      Reply

      Haha, thanks for the reassurance, Eschelle! I never actually thought about it from that perspective…great…now I’m picturing my son’s girlfriends. 🙂

  • amy lee
    Reply

    I LOVED the part where you want to snuggle with her when she’s 15 talking about boys. That is so sweet! I want that with my daughter too =)

    • Taslim Jaffer
      Reply

      Yes, I never really had that with my mom…I think it was a cultural thing. I just wasn’t supposed to date until I got married 🙂 lol…I just remember I could have used moments like the ones I described in my post when I was 15. Hopefully it all works out this way with you too!

  • Jessica
    Reply

    Beautiful Taslim! I especially love the part about unconditional love: “The mother I strive to be always remembers that children, of all ages, are like cups that need to be filled daily with kind words, loving actions and loads of hugs and smiles”. So true and so important! Thanks for this post!

    • Taslim Jaffer
      Reply

      Hi Jessica! Yup, little cups! They need filling up! And then they pee…lol (I couldn’t resist that one!)

  • hyedie
    Reply

    Indeed, I agree with Eschelle. A very lovely post 🙂

    And congrats on being one of Vancouver’s top Mommy Bloggers!

  • Lindsay Porter-Hall
    Reply

    That was a tearjerker Taslim! What a wonderful gift for your children and a great reminder to all of us busy, stressed Moms!

    • Taslim Jaffer
      Reply

      Hi Lindsay! Thanks for stopping by! We’ll always be busy, and things can get stressful. I always find it helpful to look at myself through my kids’ eyes…I wonder what they will see when they look back, and what they will remember. That motivates me.

  • Susan
    Reply

    A lovely, lovely post Taslim. I think I was a pretty good mommy. There are a few minor things I’d change if I could go back, but my children still love me and we visit, so I guess I did okay. I did the best I could and that’s all we can do. One day my daughter told me that one thing she remembers is that there was always so much love in our house. Whew! So glad that one got across, it was one of my main goals. I swore they would never lack for love the way I did. I’m sure you’re an amazing mommy!

    • Taslim Jaffer
      Reply

      I bet it’s nice to look bad and feel good 🙂 Thanks for sharing! (And I hope I’m doing a good job…I think I’ll always hope that!)

  • Raj
    Reply

    I love this post, what a wonderful idea! Personally I could really work on patience too. There is always so much to do, and places to be, and more often than not I find myself hurrying the kids. They are growing up so fast (mine are 9 and 5), I really need to slow down and give them the attention and patience they deserve.

    Thank you for sharing!
    Raj

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