Monday, May 16, 2011

What it means to be a mother...

I am now 34 weeks pregnant but back in week 33 we celebrated Mother's Day. I bought my mom and my mother in law presents and cards for my grandmothers but never gave a thought about the possibility of someone giving me presents. After all, I am a Mother-to-Be, not a mother per se, so it was a pleasant surprise to get a couple of gifts and tons of congratulations on my First Mother's Day!

However, something called my attention more than the congratulations and the gifts...

Someone on Facebook wrote:

To be a Mother is to understand that she is a mother before being a woman.

A man wrote this. I was, and still am, in shock.


Because I don't share that belief. I was not taught to share that belief. My mother is an excellent one, and I love her with all of my heart and she did NOT, even for a second, stop being a wonderful wife to my father and an incredible mom to my sister and me. She had mom time and she had wife time. She would sit down with my sister and me and chat about whatever we wanted to chat about, and then she would listen just as intently to my father talk about his day.

And my mom is not a stay-at-home mom, she is a Doctor and has a very successful practice. So its not like she had the ENTIRE day to dedicate to the three of us, she had few precious hours that she divided among us. I would often wonder how she kept her sanity, but she always tells me that my father, my sister and I are not just her family, but her best friends as well and while she was always listening to us, we too were always listening to her. So she was, and is, well taken care of.

During the weekends, my mom would leave us with my grandmother and had date nights with my dad. I loved the weekends because it was my special time with my grandparents, which loved us, spoiled us and disciplined us a lot! It was also a chance to change from the normal atmosphere at home and be at a more country place. I loved it, and so did my sister. And it gave a chance to my mom and dad to spend time together being just them: not mom and dad but just the two of them. I didn't really understand it then, but I didn't have to, nor really cared: I was having fun, I was being taken care of by two of the people I love the most... 

My mother also knew when an activity was appropriate for my sister and me to be in attendance or not. She was never the mother that goes NOWHERE unless her offspring can come with her. Why? Because there are simply some activities that are not meant for children. She never took my sister and I to Baby Showers when we were little because there was nothing for us to do there. We might have simply become a nuisance out of sheer boredom. She took us to some weddings, when they were earlier in the day, but she and my dad always went alone to evening weddings, because, really... what do young children do in evening weddings? They get cranky, they are tired... its no fun for them, so they become unbearable for the adults too. There is a time and a place for everything and my mother never encouraged me and my sister to grow up quicker than we had to. She took us to age appropriate places and shows, and invited us to join in when a conversation was appropriate for us, and disciplined us when we wanted to give an opinion on matters that were clearly for adults only.

Because of this, we were easy children to take care of. People loved us because we were so well adjusted and behaved. We were never the "unruly" kids that didn't know how to behave themselves in situations, we were the "Doctor's Daughters" who were always polite, always smiling and happy. Because we truly were. And we truly are.

My mother NEVER stopped being a wife because she was a WIFE before she became a MOTHER. She didn't make us alone, my dad is an essential part of us just as any father is an essential part of any baby. Mom and dad, whether married or not, make a baby. That much is obvious. 

So why in the world are women expected to stop being women, wives and girlfriends to become solely mothers?!

Yes, children require tons of attention. Yes, some husbands or boyfriends are unbearable but if the latter is your case, then why be with a man like that in the first place? If you have a caring and loving husband or boyfriend, why should he take second or even third place to your offspring when, if you really think about it, you wouldn't be a mother if it wasn't for them?

To me, being a mother is understanding how to create balance in your life. A balance between my husband, my unborn baby, our family and just me. A balance between home, work and Church. There are a lot of things to juggle, but my mom did them all perfectly which makes me feel assured that everything IS possible as long as I am willing to commit to it. 

I DO NOT want to stop being a wife to my husband. 
I WILL be an excellent mom to my baby and he will feel my love every day.
I DO NOT believe that being a mother means that I should stop being a woman first.
I WILL be strong, and I WILL create a balance in my life.

I DO believe this is all possible.

What do YOU believe?

Anxiously waiting for my baby to be born...


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