Thursday, December 10, 2009

True, Authentic Mom

I haven't been tagged in...I don't know how long, but this is one tag I am happy to do. My sister tagged me as a True Authentic Mom and I seriously feel so honored. This is what she said about me:

Alicia- She worries more than anyone I know that she isn't doing her best at being a mom. This alone makes her good at what she does. Often when I call in the middle of the day she is playing a board game with her kids or taking fun trips to McDonalds.

I don't know if taking my kids to a noisy, germ-infested playland to eat greasy, fatty food so I can sit and chat with friends qualifies me as a True Authentic Mom, but she'll never know what her words meant to me. Thanks, Amy!

I'm supposed to pick five things about myself that I think make me a True, Authentic Mom. (I think this is so great to force us moms to think about the good things we do instead of always focusing on our inadequacies, which I am a pro at.)

1. I am a TV/Movie Nazi. I am the strictest person I know when it comes to what I feel kids should watch. To the point of getting made fun of, which I am perfectly fine with. My kids are just now starting to watch "real people" kid movies instead of just cartoon ones, and only after I have scoured for every bit of content in it. So what if people raise their eyebrows when my kids announce they aren't allowed to watch Arthur or Spongebob. They have the rest of their lives to watch things with questionable content. They only keep this sweet innocence for a very, VERY short time.

2. I like my music LOUD. When me and the kids are driving anywhere, we are rocking out. They. Love. It. I think back to when I was growing up and the easy-listening music on the radio at barely-can-hear-it volume that played in our mini van and laugh. Not this chick. Music sounds better loud, and my kids agree.

3. Most of you know there's nothing on this earth that scares me more than throwing up. This was a big fear of mine about having kids: Kids throw up. But my kids' entire lives, I have been right there when they've gotten sick, cleaning up the mess and holding them when they needed Mommy, even knowing I was probably infecting myself. Personally, I think that deserves Mom of the Century award. (No picture for this one. You're welcome.)

4. Like Amy mentioned, I play games with my kids. Don't for a second think I'm this super mom who sits and plays with my kids all day. This is the beauty of board games. There is a start and a finish. I cannot do the playing dolls or action figures thing. Apparently I lost my ability to pretend when I gave birth. But I can play games with rules and concrete ideas, and I love it. Our games of choice are Chutes and Ladders, Candyland, Checkers, Macy'sopoly, and Go Fish (with Star Wars character cards of course.)

5. Like Amy also mentioned, I worry like it's going out of style, specifically that I'm not doing a good enough job for my kids. I worry I'm inadvertently causing some unseen damage that will come out later in their adult therapy sessions. I worry that we don't do enough fun things, like bake cookies together or do crafts. I worry that I haven't taught them enough about the gospel. I worry that they eat Top Ramen for dinner too often and don't get enough vegetables. But I am fully aware that the fact that I worry is because more than anything in this world, I want to be the best mom for these precious kids and raise them to be happy, healthy, spiritually strong adults. And that definitely makes me a True, Authentic Mom. Because every time I worry, I try a little bit harder the next day.

Thank you so much for this Amy. I needed it, big-time. Here are 5 women I think are True, Authentic Moms:

Rachael- Rachael comes instantly to mind because she does do all that fun stuff with her kids that most moms only dream about, like leaving little treasures from Leprechauns on St. Patricks Day and stringing popcorn at Christmas. She and her sisters are always taking their kids to the Children's Museum and other fun places and she is very, very protective of her kids.

Kim- Kim taught me about always being your child's advocate, no matter what. She always, always puts her kids' wants and needs and feelings first, even when it it's hard to do. She cares so much about her kids and always makes them her very first priority.

Shayla- Amongst the millions of things Shayla and I have in common, the thing we seem to share the most is how sometimes it seems like everything is harder for us than most, especially being a mom. But despite this, Shayla never ceases to amaze me at the wonderful mother that she is. Even when she is having a horrible, horrible week, she still gets her kids dressed and out the door with a homemade lunch, hair fixed, smiles on their faces. And she never lets anything stand in the way of making wonderful memories for them, taking them trick-or-treating or going on class field trips when she really didn't feel like leaving the house. She is such an example to me.

Alissa- Alissa is an amazing mom. If you asked her to tell you how she felt about her daughter, she would probably start to cry and admit there are no words to describe it. Alissa is totally that mom we all thought we'd be, sitting and reading to her toddler all day long, and playing games, and teaching her. Her little girl is the most important thing in the world to her and she definitely deserves an award for her mothering!

Brenda D.- Brenda is expecting her fifth child (another boy!) and does such a great job with the four she already has. She is the most laid back, easy-going mom I know. She doesn't get upset or worked up about the little things that don't matter, shrugging or laughing them off. She has raised her kids strong in the gospel and makes sure they are surrounded by good influences.

Okay moms, you've been tagged. You have to do this, because you all deserve to focus on why you're True, Authentic Moms!


Amy J. said...

I loved your greasy, germ infested discription! I think McDonalds is a magical place for children...and you know one of Branson's first words was French Fries.

Great list...I am always shocked every time you are able to hang out with your vomiting child, a task I never thought would be humanly possible for you! You do rock...but that's why I tagged you.

Aubrey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aubrey said...

What a fun list! What I love most about you and Amy's lists is the normality. What us real Mom's do, what is best for each of our families on an individual basis. If there is one thing I have learned from being a Mom it is NOT to rate myself and my little love against others. So what if you take your kids to McDonalds twice a week! THEY LOVE IT! YOU LOVE IT! Let your kids be kids and be a kid with 'em gosh darn it!

Shayla said...

Wow, thanks so much Alicia. Your words meant so much to me. I know you and I often sit in the same boat of worry when it comes to being a good enough mom with all our own "issues". That said, one of the things I love is playing games with the kids, as well. And reading books. I never thought about why, but a start and an end to the process is probably a good reason. And I don't have to think too hard and I don't have to pretend...pretending is too hard on my brain. We like playing UNO. Oh, and the music playing LOUD is what you'll hear in our car, too.

Rachael said...

Thank You! This post came at the end of a day filled with yelling and empty threats! Seriously, this really meant a lot to me. It will be good for me to reflect awhile and try to think of a few things I am good at, instead of rolling around in all of my insecurities.

I loved all of your reasons for yourself. I too hate sponge bob, and struggle with playing pretend. My kids could replace top ramen with mac and cheese, and they too love the music loud. I was however reminded the other day, to possibly, maybe, monitor a little better my choice in song since Colton was singing "push it" by Salt-n-Peppa! At least it was from the Glee soundtrack...

Lisa said...

uh-yeah...sponge bob is not allowed at our house either. music is meant to be blasted, and top ramen ROCKS! if you ever wonder how you're doing as a mom...let your kids remind you. they're amazing, gotta be doing something right, huh?

Ben and Alissa said...

Thanks Alicia! I don't even know what to say. I've wanted to be a mom my whole life and then the extra three years waiting for her to get here after we wanted her... it's made me appreciate having her in my life so much more. I guess that's how it's going to be with our family. We've already been waiting over a year for #2 to come along, so you KNOW that baby is going to get loved when they finally come. I think all the years of heartache and waiting has helped me to be a more patient, grateful and loving mother. (Though, of course, I am far from perfect.)

meohmyers said...

Awww, thanks, Alicia! This made my rotten day so much better! That's so sweet of you to put me on your list of True Authentic Moms. We're surrounded by so many great examples of good moms. I loved hearing what stands out to you about yourself and your friends. You should be so proud of yourself. This was a great post, especially today.

Andrea said...

Sorry I haven't been around much lately. Loved this post. Makes me proud of the things I think I do well and think about some things I'd like to do better. How nice to have such a variety of awesome examples!