As I was reading through the book, I was thinking . . . "Wow! This lady is much more relaxed in her parenting style that I am!" I definitely would not do some of the things that she does, but either way, I don't think that makes either of us a bad mom . . . just different. For example, I would not give my son oreo cookies every day after school or let him watch the amount of television or play video games that she allows her kids or even agree with her on some of her discipline styles. However, with that said, I also felt that there was some things that were a breath of fresh air, especially on the ending! When she wrote, "Sometimes I'm too busy being a mom to enjoy being a mom." Wow! I could definitely relate! And, I love that she confirmed that we will make mistakes, but we can not dwell on them As a parent, we have to keep on "moving forward." But most importantly of all, she talked about the "woulda-coulda-shouldas" and that reminded me of a poem by Shel Silverstein that I have a habit of passing on to my many younger cousins . . .
LISTEN TO THE MUSTN'TS
Listen to the MUSTN'TS, child,
Listen to the DON'TS
Listen to the SHOULDN'TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON'TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me -
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be.
If we are constantly looking at all the things that we should have done or could have done, we will not be able to see the possibilities and opportunities looking right at us! This was such a breath of fresh air because I can sometimes get caught up in this very game.
Lastly, Spencer also wrote about something that I did not know or comprehend until I lived in the 'Ville . . . "mamaraderie - the camaraderie among mamas that's the unsung gift to every mother on the planet." I was a mother before moving to this obscure place, but never experienced mamaraderie like I did there. The support and the encouragement from all you moms (you know who you are!) was so inspiring and life-saving! To know that your child is not the only one with little quirks or to know that if I do something different from the other moms and it does not make me a bad mom can truly alleviate the many worries and stresses that come along with motherhood!
Thank you to all you inspiring moms out there! And, thank you to Paula Spencer for the rejuvenation! It is nice to receive the reminder to "stop and smell the crayons" every once in a while to remember what is truly important in life.
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