Monday, February 16, 2015
Lessons in Motherhood: Mothering From Scratch Review
I was quite young when I became a wife and mother. I married at 19 years old and welcomed my son into our lives just a few weeks shy of 20 years old. Being a young mom has had many advantages, but it also meant I was the first among my peers to start on this journey. I didn't have anyone my own age to turn to for advice or input, I found myself having to learn it all as I went. And I certainly have learned a lot over the last 7.5 years since my son was born.
Motherhood is never as expected.
Before becoming a mom, we all have this idea of how we will be as a mother. 'I won't do this', 'I will always', 'My kids won't act that way'...we think we have it all figured out. I certainly did. I may not have had any peers to rely on for input, but I had my books. I had my ideas of what kind of mom I wanted to be and how I was going to accomplish it. Then my son arrived. I soon discovered that in motherhood planning is...well, a moot point! You find in time that things you thought you'd never do, you do. Things you thought you'd always do, aren't really that important. And having control over your kids' actions and personalities, that's just a dream. Plan as you try, sometimes you just find yourself having to adjust accordingly. And even when you think you've got your mothering technique down, something will come along to make you rethink it all. This certainly was the case for me when my son was diagnosed with autism at age two...suddenly I found myself having to adjust a brand new reality and relearning everything I'd learned all over again. Which brings us to...
Motherhood is a learning experience...and every day is a new lesson.
As I've said, motherhood is known to throw us curve balls...and we have no option but to keep pushing forward. We are not always going to do the right thing, but we can always learn from our mistakes and start from scratch the next day. Like I said, I found this truth out after my son's diagnosis. I had to learn a whole new world. A world of ABA and IEPs and charts and therapies galore. I had to learn how to deal with sensory issues and meltdowns and delays in communication. I had to learn how my son's mind worked and how to relate to him. And let me tell you...after almost 6 years along this autism journey, and I am STILL learning. When my daughter came along, I again had to relearn mothering...I had to adjust to being a mother of two, to having a daughter and learning her individual cues.
Motherhood is not one size fits all.
Before becoming a mother, I didn't know anything about mommy wars or parenting styles. Attachment parenting? What was that? In a way, I'm glad that I didn't know these things, because it allowed me to just go with the flow and do what came naturally. Admittedly, what came naturally for me was attachment parenting...it worked for us. It fit my son's needs and our life as a family. When my daughter was born, I assumed we would do things pretty much the same... and mostly we did. But her personality was different than my son's. Some things that he liked, she didn't...and we had to adjust accordingly. Parenting styles, discipline methods...these are areas in which what works for one family and one child may not be what's best for another...even within the same family. We might find we like the ideals of attachment parenting, but realize that they don't truly all work for us...and there's nothing wrong with that. Follow your instincts, do what feels natural to you. Develop your own unique parenting style.
Motherhood cannot be done alone.
Above all I have learned that motherhood is rough, and should not be done without help. Finding mom friends with similar experiences can make a world of difference in our sanity. But beyond that, calling on God to be there through our parenting journey is needed as well. During my time as a military wife, I was often going through this parenting business alone. I was there dealing with therapies, dealing with IEP meetings, dealing with poop smearing and meltdowns and the stress of it all...all by myself, with my husband across the world and my own family across the country. It was not easy. I was stressed. I could not do it alone. This experience taught me that in those times, I didn't have to do it alone and that God was with me. Always. Without God, I could never have made it through.
As I've said, motherhood has taught me a lot, and I'm still learning and developing my own unique mothering style as I go. Do you need help finding your own style? A reminder that you don't have to do it all? Advice on keeping God at the center of your mothering, Mothering from Scratch is just the solution.
Avoiding the typical one-size-fits-all approach, shows you how to develop a personalized mothering style that helps you become the best mom you can be. By customizing your parenting to complement your personality and background, you can enhance--and, if necessary, restore--the joy of mothering!
Full of solid biblical truth, this book encourages you to pursue the methods that work best for you and tap into the resources surrounding you. Equipped with this practical guide, you can experience freedom from the fear of doing it "wrong" and allow room for grace in your parenting.
This fun book serves as a great reminder that mothering is not easy, it's not one size fits all and that we don't have to figure it all out on our own. It offers us ideas to think about, encouragement for the tough times and a reminder that through God we can do all things...including motherhood. It is a great read for any mother...no matter how long she's been on the journey, as a reminder that she can always start over and mother from scratch.
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