My mom has taught me a significant amount about being a mother. But this morning as I prepared to go to her house to spend some time with her and my aunt (my bonus mom) it occurred to me I've never really stopped to ask her about the things that she's learned about being a mom, or what other mothers have taught her. So today, in honor of Mother's Day and mothers everywhere, I bring you a candid interview with the woman I consider to be the best mom in the universe, my mom- Linda Teeters.
What has motherhood taught you about yourself?
How patient I can be. I never really thought of myself as a patient person before I became a mother.
As you think about your three children, what age would you consider to have brought you the most joy?
Probably between 3 and 4 years old for all three of you. Children really begin to reason at that age and start to better understand the world around them. Their curiosity begins to peak and things all around them start to "click". That's really fun to watch.
What age do you feel was the most difficult?
12 and 13. In your teenage years you were all boundary pushers. Except for Tristan, he was a joy through his teenage years. He didn't really push back until much later, into his college years. It's difficult when your children are teenagers. Oftentimes you begin to develop serious trust issues with your kids at that age. The first time your kids disappoint you is really tough. It can just floor you.
No one told me parenthood would be:
Like living with your heart outside of your body. You experience all of these extreme emotions- joy, sadness, pain. I remember when you were about 5 years old you believed in Santa Claus so much. You wrote him several letters that year and they weren't about what you wanted to get for Christmas. You genuinely cared for him like he was a friend and would write to let him know you were thinking of him and hoped the reindeer were doing well, and that he would be able to get everything done in time. One day we were standing in line at the grocery store and you were talking about Santa and I just remember thinking- oh my gosh, how am I ever going to tell her the truth? She's going to be so upset! I didn't want you to be disappointed.
What's one piece of advice you would give to other moms?
Choose your battles. It all seems so huge and everything seems very important, but in the grand scheme of things it's not. When they dye their hair funny colors, it's just hair. When they wear wild outfits, it's just clothes.
What do you believe was your mother's legacy?
Compassion. She was so compassionate. Anyone who ever had a problem, she was always there. She wasn't at all judgmental. I don't ever remember her having an ill word to say about anyone.
What do you want your legacy to be?
Kindness. I've always made sure to teach my kids to be thoughtful and kind and I hope to be viewed as someone who was thoughtful and kind as well. Also, that I was able to stay centered by appreciating the beauty and simplicity of nature. How can you not be kind and grateful when you see the beauty of nature all around you?!
To my mother and to all of the wonderful mothers in my life, wishing you a very Happy Mother's Day. You deserve it.
Until next time,