Some of us buy cookbooks, a treadmill or storage baskets because we believe it would be nice to cook more, exercise or being organized. It seems like the right things to do and we aim to develop these habits.
Yet we know from experience that we rarely reach our goals, and that’s when the initial enthusiasm gives way to disappointment. And this disappointment can sometimes make us feel like we have failed.
Motherhood seems to contribute to this gap between our ideal and reality because it is no longer a simple and inconsequential goal. It’s about the welfare of our children and our role as mothers. In fact, the more moms I meet, the more I observe that women give their children what they have and not what they want. How can we transmit a passion for adventure to our kids when we prefer stability? Our personalities and values don’t change entirely after giving birth. We have to work with what we have and be proud of it.
Social values vs. personal values
We all know how we should be and what we should do in order to be a good mother. And on top of it all, we are bombarded with information and advice. Every specialist (dentist, pediatrician, osteopath, therapist, educator, etc.) wants to tells us how important our children’s well-being is. Yet to this day, I have never met a mother who can implement all these recommendations, such as flossing her kid’s teeth daily, taking her child to an osteopath after a fall and preparing healthy meals three times a day. This mother does not exist because we are human beings, which means that we are unique and complex beings.
Of course no mother is against the concept of offering the very best to her child, but each one has her own vision of what that represents. We raise our children according to who we are and what we value. When we feel guilty for not being able to do everything, we should try to make a distinction between what society values and what really matters to us!
Passing on our values
We instill our values to our children by the choices we make and actions we do every day. That’s how they’ll understand what is important to us. And when they get older, he will be able to notice our lack of integrity.
What parent has never been told off by his children: "You don’t want me to do it, but you do it yourself!" As time goes by, we have to be mindful about passing on our values.
It is normal to want to pass on as many values as possible, but we must realize that our actions speak louder than words! The goal is to give our kids all the tools they’ll need to blossom. We want to spare them hardships, but in the end, they will have to determine what is important to them.
Changing our values
Being a parent can certainly influence our values and bring us to change certain aspects of our lives, such our neighborhood and work schedule, but there is little change in who we really are. Our past, our education and the difficult experiences we’ve been through will always be a part of us.
As parents, our actions will not always reflect our values. We can hope to change, and it is important to know that these changes rarely occur as quickly as we wish they would. In fact, what we wish to change quickly is often a part of us that is deeply rooted and hard to change! We have to accept the parent and person that we are.