I keep telling my youngest to "make better choices."
But, perhaps, I'm the one that needs to.
If I'm honest with you, and myself, this directive to
and be better,
well, it's kind of my mom-established, household anthem.
For the kids
And, the husband.
And, what I imagine my innocent and impressionable young children must hear is:
"Who you are is not good enough. You must change."
"Why just "be," when you can BE IMPROVING?"
"Stop making mistakes! Any is too many."
And, "Mommy loves you, but I would love you more if you acted 'right.'"
I hate to think of that.
I'm frustrated with myself that it's entirely possible that my children are growing up believing that anything less than perfection, at all times, is a sign of weakness, and, well, disappointing to those around you, even those that love you.
I don't believe that, of course.
I need to repeat that, so that you, they and I hear that loud and clear -- I do not believe that my offspring must be perfect.
Yet, I think how I behave as mama sometimes, very well might convince those three precious pieces of my heart and onlookers that I do.
So how do we, as parents, encourage our kids to seek constant refinement and betterment while ensuring that they wholeheartedly believe that who they are at their core with their authentic idiosyncrasies is valued and worthy, no matter what -- even minus any of the self-improvement I so often promote, preach about and even coax out of them?
I guess that it starts with each of us, as mothers, believing the same for ourselves.
A perfection-seeking mother is going to raise perfection-seeking children.
A fault-finding mother is going to raise fault-finding children.
The same goes for the anxious mother, who will inevitably raise anxious children and the hot-tempered mother whose children will likely be, at minimum, a tad bit hot-headed, as well.
I mentioned that I keep telling my youngest to "make better choices," but it's becoming more clear to me as I word vomit on my keyboard that I most definitely need to do the same.
I'm working every day at becoming a better
valued member of the community,
and so much more.
And, what I tell myself works for me is pushing beyond my comfort zone and perpetually seeking to make progress of some sort.
Honestly, I don't think that's a bad thing, for myself or my kids, to live and operate in pursuit of an upgraded self, but I do believe that as with everything -- there has to be a balance, one I haven't been keeping or encouraging as of late.
So here's the takeaway I think I've dissected from my rant:
While there is absolutely no need to stop chasing a better version of yourself or urging your children to be the best that they can be, you must also wholly accept and appreciate who each of you is at present.
And, you must do so, full-knowing that both you and they are capable humans who are lovable, intelligent, talented, unique, and vital to this world and its people despite any semblance of imperfections or inadequacy.