I never realized the implication of this until my son handed me a folded pink piece of paper that said, “WOW.”
“Oh,” I thought. “That was…thoughtful.”
But, as I turned the paper to set it up on the counter I saw it for what it was. When folded together it stood upright and said “MOM.” And when opened flat, it said, “WOW MOM.”
I tried to figure out how “WOW” could apply to me as a mother. My heart sank as I thought about how seemingly little “wow” there is about me.
I’m the woman who drives a safe economical minivan instead of her dream Jeep Cherokee. I’m the woman who doesn’t travel much these days, decorates with second-hand furniture, doesn’t have a career and by most standards would be considered very ordinary.
I’m the mother who is ashamed at how often she forgets to use a gentle voice and who wishes she could find a way to connect with a very stubborn child. I’m the mother who lost her patience with her two-year-old today when he pumped her hair conditioner into the toilet. I’m the mother who could do a lot better job of slowing down and enjoying life with her children.
I’m the woman who has to dig deep to find anything to say “WOW” about.
But isn’t that how it is with motherhood? There is no one there to give you a “Super!” sticker on that changed diaper. No one says, “Great job on not losing your temper today, Mom!” No one asks for a victory speech when you just finished spending the whole night and day preparing for a birthday party. And, when you make dinner, you have to remind your consumers to turn their “Ew gross!” into a “Thank you!”
Turning the MOM into WOW is hard. Learning how to pat ourselves on the back when no one else does is something that helps us recognize our growth. Searching within ourselves to see past the ordinary and find the extraordinary is how we can find joy in our roll of MOM.
WOW! I have stretch marks, varicose veins, and saggy…you get the picture. Battle scars from giving life to three souls.
WOW! I have spent every day of these little people’s lives with them, and look at how far we’ve come! We’ve gone from diapers and ABC’s to novels and a family economy.
WOW! I handled that situation a lot better than the frustrating situation yesterday. That made a huge difference in everyone’s attitude. I’m so glad we didn’t end up in a “battle-of-the-wills” again.
WOW! I’m so glad I took that moment to turn off the computer and sit down on the floor and do a puzzle. My little guy was beaming as we played together, and I love this glow in my heart.
WOW! I really messed up today. I’m so grateful tomorrow is a new day, and I can try again.
Motherhood is a learning process and doesn’t come perfectly to anyone. It is in recognizing we are growing and progressing as mothers that there is truly something to WOW about!
WOW! I am ordinary. To the world, not much that I do on a daily basis could be boasted on a resume. But, I have kids. They love me. They depend on me. I get to participate in the discovery of their dreams and desires as I discover my own. They help me determine my own strengths and weaknesses. We get to learn and grow together, and I am the person they trust to share this journey with. WOW! I am a MOM.
QUESTION: What did you do today that deserves a WOW?
CHALLENGE: For one week, before you go to bed, look past the ordinary in you to find the extraordinary! (If you’re like me, you may need to think for a minute. As mothers, we’re not always good at giving ourselves compliments. What do you do each day as a mom that you can say WOW about? Write it on a piece of paper and put it somewhere where you can see it. Don’t forget there is an amazing WOW of a MOM in you!
Image provided by Elsje Denison.
Originally published August 26, 2013.