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Welcome friend! I’m here to help you become the best mom you can be. Here I share my story of how I got good at being a mom, and I have lots more to share with you to help you become a great mom, too.
I will readily admit that there are moms out there who are better at certain skills of motherhood than I am, but I feel very strongly that no one loves being a mother more than I do.
My definition of being a ‘good mom’ may be different than someone else’s definition, and that’s ok. What I want to share with you is a somewhat brief story of how I went from-
- being a young woman who wanted to be a mom and knew that it was a worthy and important thing, but quite frankly really stunk at it
- to being a mom who knows exactly her worth and value as a mom and who, quite frankly, is really good at it.
Perfect? Heavens, no.
All of my weaknesses and flat-out failings included, I am a happy mom and I love being a mom more than anything.
How did I get this way? I’ll tell you…
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My story of How I Got Good at Being a Mom
I got married at age 19 to a wonderful man. I was just sure I was ready for this new phase of my life and I leaped in with both feet.
By age 21 we had our first child, and then our second just over 2 years later. (We now have 5 awesome kids!)
Well, looking back on those early years of my married life, I can plainly see how lacking I was in preparation. I had no clue how to be a wife or a mother. My mom had made it all look so easy. She was amazing!
But me? Wow. I was really struggling. Somehow, I didn’t pick up on those skills while growing up.
I Struggled So Much in the Beginning
My first child was super colicky and I had serious post-partum depression – although I didn’t know what that was at the time. I just thought this was how things were and I just needed to deal with it.
Life was really, really hard and I was wayyyy overwhelmed and really doing poorly with it all. I cried and cried and cried…
The demands felt so great and I felt way in over my head.
And, I had a temper.
I didn’t know I had a temper until I had kids.
One of these days I’m going to get around to writing about how I totally overcame having a strong temper. Ooooh, everything my kids did ‘wrong’ just blew me up. I yelled. I got angry. I spanked. I made my kids cry. And I did not love being a mom.
But after a few years, I began to realize that if anything was going to get better, I had to get better. If anything was going to change, I had to change.
And I began to realize that my kids weren’t the problem. I was. I was the grown-up. I was the one responsible for their care and to train them up in the way they should go. I was the one to show them what love and joy looked like.
I had a temper and I had to change.
And I did change. But that whole story of how I did change is for another time.
The amazing fact is, I am now a totally different person. When I tell my story I feel like I’m talking about someone else. That person just simply isn’t me anymore.
And I got better at being a mom. How?
It all began with wanting to be a better mom. My focus shifted from how hard things were to how I wanted things to be.
All I knew was I wanted things to be better. I wanted to be happy.
But I felt so alone
I felt so alone and I felt so rotten. I didn’t talk to anyone about it because I was ashamed. I thought everyone was just supposed to know how to do all of this but something was wrong with me. I didn’t want anyone to know what a bad mom I was.
But I knew there was one place I could turn to that would hear me and love me in spite of myself. Who wouldn’t judge me or reject me. And that was my Heavenly Father.
I turned to him in real, tear-jerking, soul-wrenching prayer – oftentimes sounding like this…
Dear Heavenly Father,
I hate who I am right now. I hate how I’m behaving. I feel so frustrated all the time. You’ve blessed me with such sweet kids, but man, I’m just ruining them! I don’t want to be this way or feel this way anymore. I want to change! But I don’t know how! Please, Father, wilt thou help me see how to be a happier and better mom?
Help started to come
My heart and mind turned to searching for any help I could find. I read books. I observed other women who I thought were doing well. I tried to do better and failed, tried again and did a little better. I read what my church leaders said about motherhood and family. I studied scripture looking for anything about motherhood, raising and teaching a family, and the importance of it.
And I prayed. A lot. And for a long time, specifically about my struggles.
There wasn’t a grand flash of a change in my behavior and feelings. It all came line up line, here a little and there a little.
I began to see my children differently. They weren’t the noisy, busy, obstacles to my peace anymore. I began to see them more for who they truly are – children of a loving God who has entrusted me with their care.
I began to enjoy them more. I began to get better at leading them, and therefore they began to get better at following me.
I felt a greater responsibility to do it right, for my obligation was directly to God to care for, nurture, and raise up his children unto him.
Who are these people in my home?
I remember one day when I was in a particularly ponderous mood, I asked in my mind and heart, “Who are these people in my home?” That might sound funny, but I was indeed talking about my kids. I wanted to know, “Who are they?”
I began to realize the possibility, and even the probability, that these kids who I had been entrusted with could very well be wiser and more noble souls than I. And I was to raise them?
No longer did I view them as noisy, rambunctious challenges to just deal with and make it through the day. I began to see them, their care, and their training, as the most noble and worthwhile work I could ever do.
And I began to feel keenly the likelihood that these precious children in my home were sent to me to also train and raise me. We were, in fact, training and raising each other. For although I was the adult being a parent to these children, I am still but a child to my Father in Heaven, and he is still raising and training me, to help me become more like him.
>> I realized that Motherhood was my school. <<
Once I began to see this aspect of things more clearly, I began to see that I wasn’t so bad after all. I was just learning!
Yes, I was stumbling a lot, but I was being helped and guided all along.
Boy, did I have a lot to learn, but my God knew that and loved me through it all. Patiently. Perfectly. Understanding me through every one of my rotten days and every stinky attitude. He patiently and lovingly put experiences in my path, people in my days, words in my mind and heart, and sweet smiles and hugs from my precious children. To teach me. To help me begin to see my worth and my invaluable calling as a mother. He had my back all the way, every day.
Just like he has yours.
That’s how the transformation began
So this, my friend, was the beginning of my transformation as a mom.
This is how I went from feeling like a total failure and a complete hot mess to understanding and valuing my role and working to cultivate the skills and abilities and especially the viewpoint I needed to be a happy, successful mom.
This is your opportunity, too
My friend, this is your path too. You are a mother. No matter how good or bad you feel you are as a mom, no matter where you are on your path, yours is a divine calling and you have the greatest help and mentor in the world to help you become as happy as you want to be. To help you become as skilled and as able of a mother as you want to be.
For motherhood is your school.
Where to begin
1. My first recommendation to you would be to forgive yourself. To love yourself. You are a mother in training and have probably not been pleased with your efforts a time or two. Please forgive yourself. Love yourself. Ask for your kids’ forgiveness if you need to.
2. Then the second thing is to decide you want something better. That you want to be better at being a mom, and that you want to be happy. And when you do that – –
>BAM< the-most-awesome-goal-ever has just been set.
3. Then go to the source of all power and of all love. Get on your knees and plead for his help. Pour your heart out to him and seek his guidance. Often. Daily. Multiple times each day. Let him and you know how very serious you are about this.
4. Then get up and get to work. Find great books and resources to study. Observe other good women and take mental notes on how they do things. Try. Try again. Get back up when you fall. Try again. Decide that you are done with anything that is not part of your goal – and decide that you’re doing this no matter what. And please, keep forgiving yourself along the way, for that is what God does.
And over time you will see miracles take place.
Greater happiness than you can imagine
That has definitely been my experience. Greater happiness and joy than I ever thought possible. Greater skill in motherhood than I ever dreamed of.
God is good. He wants the very best for us. He desires that we become our very best selves, just as much and more than we do.
He did help me. I did work hard and changed my habits and responses – with his help. I bit my tongue on more than one occasion. And I cried and cried when I felt so frustrated. But he did help me become patient. He did help me become happy. I was changed.
And oh, I am sooo happy! I LOVE being a mom with all my heart! And I LOVE the fact that my kids see me as a happy mom. They love it and they flourish in it.
Our home is happy. Our lives are happy. Perfect? Heavens no. Far from it. But happy nonetheless.
You can be a great mom, too, my friend.
How bad do you want it? How hard are you willing to work for it? How much do you believe you can be happier? And how powerful do you think our God is?
Well, when we put it that way, it’s almost a done deal, isn’t it? 🙂
I’m here to help you all I can. This series on “How to Be a Happy Mom” is a great place to start!
Please let me know how I can help you.
My mission is to help strengthen you and your family as best I can.
Get 48 beautiful and heartfelt Mom Affirmation Cards to help you remember how important you are and how much you love being a mom.
Read the rest of the articles in this series of “How to Be a Happy Mom”:
No link yet? Coming soon!
- How to Be a Happy Mom: An Introduction
- My Story: How I Got Good at Being a Mom
- It’s All About Light and Focus
- #1 Tip for Better Parenting
- Self-Care for Moms – Is it Selfish? Or Necessary?
- Fundamental Self-Care Ideas That Will Make You a Happier Mom
- Best-Self Care Products Moms Will Love
- Tips & Helps to Avoid Mommy Burnout
- How to Do it All as a Mom
- How to Get More Things Done as a Mom
- How to be Happy on Mother’s Day
- How to Find Joy in Life
Much love to you, my friend!