Things I Wish I Knew Before Motherhood

What things do you wish you knew before becoming a mother? Chime in. Just think, your experience and wisdom could help another mother (or mother-to-be). Here are a few things that would have helped me:

I wish I had known that. . .

1.  I would be tempted to worry about many things but  most of what mothers worry about never happen.

2.  Children are more capable than I realized. Give them room to take safe risks and let them learn from their stumbles.

3.  My child is not me. He will not have exactly the same needs as I do.

2 thoughts on “Things I Wish I Knew Before Motherhood

  1. Alicea – Thanks for your post. This is an important topic. Two of your comments ring true for me as well: 1) Children are more resilient than we realize. Everyone needs to be stretched, it’s part of growing, 2) “Worrying.” I’ve heard it said that “Sufficient for the day is its own troubles,” and worrying about (tomorrow) things that “may” happen is wasted time, energy and stressful, both physically and mentally. The following are two things that I wish I would have thought about and beleived:
    1 – Influence is a powerful and necessary tool. Guard your ability to influence your children by keeping the lines of communication open. One way I obstructed this with my daughter was “overprotecting” her. I think so much so that she resents me and now has a deaf hear to (some) my counsel. I have to be more intentional with my approach to influence now. Allow your children measureable and age appropriate opportunities to make their own decisions, like choosing actiivies they will particilate in, their choice of clothing, and perhaps the way they wear their hair.
    2- Being more deliberate about showing my love, respect, and concern for them. Something as simple as looking straight into their eyes while speaking or listening conveys love, concern, and is very affirming.

  2. Thank you Charisse for your insightful comments. Yes, it is hard sometimes not to cross over the line into “overprotection” as you stated–especially when our kids are younger. I think many caring mothers would agree that this is a difficult part of the job we’re given. It really is a reminder for me that each child is different and the amount of freedom we give should correlate to the level of responsiblity they’ve shown. I like your analogy about “stretching”. Parents have to stretch to fit each stage in our children’s lives as they stretch into maturity. I’m learning that one recipe may not always work and that it takes trial and error. Eventually, the ingredients we’ve been experimenting with meld together to make something wonderful. At least that’s the goal!

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