Before becoming a mother, you were also stumbling upon cute quotes, thinking: “Haha, lovely, but this will never be me!” Fast forward to a few years later – and guess what? IT IS you. Because, no matter how prepared you think you are, when that bundle of joy is finally in your arms, all those parenting books you’ve read become a big blur and now you are just improvising and learning on the go, just like any other mother. That’s when you realize that those quotes, more than simplying cute sayings, are as genuine as they come – and here are 7 quotes you can actually relate to:
1) “Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” – Robert Fulghum
If before becoming a parent, you were aware that your actions had consequences, now that there is at least one more person under your wings, you are doubly aware. Children watch you and they listen more to what you say when you are not actually talking to them. They mimic your behavior. This is why, more than being concerned that your child isn’t paying attention to you when you tell him to eat his veggies, you should worry about the behavior and family dynamics he witnesses; what he sees happening in his household is what will become his foundation later on in life.
2) “Everybody knows how to raise children, except the people who have them.” – P. J. O’Rourke
Actually, I might be cheating, because this is one of those parenting quotes you were able to directly relate to in the past, rather than during your motherhood. Yes, you probably were one of those know-it-all people giving unsolicited parenting advice even though you didn’t have any kids. This is not to say that childless people can’t actually help mothers, but it’s so much easier to have an opinion and talk theory, without having to practice it.
3) “Having children is like living in a frat house – nobody sleeps, everything’s broken and there’s a lot of throwing up.” – Ray Romano
We’re up all night to get lucky – or maybe it’s because baby is so not sleeping and subsequently, neither are you. You think “this too shall pass”, once they enter toddlerhood, and it does – sort of. But there are worse things to come. Welcome to the stage of tummy aches and broken pieces of décor. All it takes to turn your favorite vase into a puzzle is a simple baseball throw!
4) “But kids don’t stay with you if you do it right. It’s the one job where, the better you are, the more surely you won’t be needed in the long run.” – Barbara Kingslover
Hands down, this is one of the most heartbreaking parenting quotes on the list – it’s ironic, but so true. Parenting done right means raising well-adjusted children and preparing them for the world, teaching them to be responsible for their choices, actions and words. The better you raise them, the sooner they will leave, because thanks to you, they have become independent and strong enough to fly away and form their own nests.
5) “The interesting thing about being a mother is that everyone wants pets, but no one but me cleans the kitty litter.” – Meryl Streep
Oh yes, this one sounds way too familiar. Why wouldn’t a child want a pet? Admit it, you were in that stage too as a kid. They are cute, fluffy, adorable – problem is, kids don’t realize that they aren’t meant to be just cuddled and played with. Sometimes, they need to be fed and taken outside for basic needs. That’s where mum steps in. Unfortunately. Good luck trying to convince kids to do the (literally) dirty job.
6) “I don’t remember who said this, but there really are places in the heart you don’t even know exist until you love a child.” – Anne Lamott
Yes, I know, it’s a quoteception; still, this doesn’t make it any less honest. Before having kids, those who grew up in loving families thought that they could never love someone more than they love their parents. Cue to – pregnancy and childbirth, with the realization of how wrong they were. Indeed, you think you’ve already felt it all, but when you see your baby for the first time, there is a new kind of feeling invading your body. It’s still love, but it’s different – it’s love taken to the ultimate level. It’s overwhelming in the best sense of the word.
7) “To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.” – Barbara Johnson
We often take too many things for granted and the love of our children is one of them. In fact, just like any kind of love, the mutual love between a mother and her children needs nurturing. You can’t expect your children to love you just because you gave them birth. You have to be involved in their lives and not just…exist. Know what they like, what they hate, what their favorite pizza topping is or if they even like pizza at all. Know what they are good at, where they need to improve or let go or if they just need an extra push, because the talent is already there. Know what movies make them cry or what movies make them laugh hysterically. Know if they need to be encouraged or reprimanded for their actions. Know their computer administrator passwords – OK, maybe that’s a bit too far. But to know all this, you have to be there – not just merely existing, but engaging.
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