Celebrate the Small Successes

On February 16, 2006, my life was profoundly affected. It was the blessed day that I gave birth to my daughter, Anya. Since that day my world has become more meaningful, more colorful, and fulfilling in ways I never thought possible. Motherhood has made me examine my life under a microscope. My choices are different, my compassion is deeper and I’ve become significantly more aware of my shortcoming and faults. Don’t get me wrong being a mother has also shown me how courageous and strong I really am, of course through the power of God. I’ve amazed myself at my ability to multitask, to run a household, to financially support my family, and to make the impossible possible. But, I’m acutely aware of my imperfections. There are days when I’m not sure if I am being the best mom I can be, and I think many moms out there can relate. We all experience days when the dishes pile up, the lunches are forgotten, discipline isn’t working and you’re ready to pull your hair out and lock yourself inside a closet. I won’t candy coat it sometimes I feel like I am failing. When I’m having one of those days, I have to remind myself to celebrate the small successes.

During parenthood you’ll experience those BIG moments, those successes that can’t be mistaken. And they should be celebrated they are milestones in your life and your children’s life. But, do you celebrate the small successes of everyday motherhood? These little moments are just as significant as the big ones. Sometimes we become too caught up into what is worthy to celebrate when in reality every minute with our children is a blessing even on those days. I discovered that I was being too hard on myself. My daughter simply enjoys just being. Isn’t that the loveliest thing about children? They enjoy the lightness of being. Children always find a reason to celebrate. They don’t need a holiday, a birthday, a promotion or any other specific reason that adults need to find joy. Joy is innately part of our children’s life. Believe it or not we used to be like that and then we grew up!

Motherhood is sometimes down-right difficult. It is easy to get down on yourself, but before you do I encourage you to celebrate the small successes. For example, you have a picky eater who refuses to eat their broccoli, but they at everything else on their plate, instead of being frustrated they didn’t eat the broccoli celebrate the fact that they ate everything else. Maybe you’re having a bad day, everything that can go wrong has, when you pick up your child from school they give you a big hug and kiss, celebrate that moment! Take time to set the negative aside and celebrate all the little things that memories are made of.

Did your five year old just help you with a chore in the house? Did your teenager give you a kiss for no specific reason? Did you make it on time to the 9:00 am ballet class on Saturday? Did your child use their manners without being reminded? Did your preschooler apologize to you after throwing a tantrum and was sincerely sorry, giving you a hug and a kiss? These are reasons to celebrate, they may be small, but they are meaningful. They make up your experience as a mother.

I used to get really down on myself because I was not a stay at home mom. For me staying at home was and is where my heart is. I felt guilty that Anya was in preschool, for a good portion of the day. This guilt was eating away at me and instead of enjoying the moments I had with her I was sad about having to leave her. I wasn’t fully in the present and it wasn’t helping either of us. I realized that although I worked, I had a wonderful and close relationship with my daughter. There was no one in the world she’d rather be with and vice a versa. It was obvious when she’d run full speed into my arms after school screaming, “Mommy!” I celebrate, savor, and look forward to that small moment every single day. Change your perspective on what is significant and motherhood can take on a whole new reason for celebration.

Copyright © Chere Williams, Moms of Faith, All Rights Reserved

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