Things I’ve Learned from Being a Mother

 

My children don’t belong to me. They are, as Gibran says, “life’s greatest longing for itself.”

So long as I am with my children, I have reasons to laugh. Even in the darkest night. Even when the heart is heavy with sorrow.

There is never enough food.

Bedtime is when I say it’s bedtime (and other such things) because there has never been a truer saying than “my house, my rules.”

Children do what they see, not what they’re told.

They do what they’re told when they understand why they’re told what they’re told.

I can’t say anything in front of the kids that I don’t want them to loudly retell in striking detail to the next person they see.

I have to find time alone, be alone.

The children know I’m sad when I get angry for no reason. My sadness hurts them more than my ire.

If I want to live my dreams of traveling or ever save any money, I need to stop teaching, or get a second job.

I have not become a different person, contrary to the myth that motherhood changes a person.

I can curse, and my children can still know that if they do, their regret will be tangible.

Even when I feel like I am without purpose or strength, I am my children’s definition of omnipotence.

Lying to children is a deplorable sin.

They will become who they choose to be, not who I intend or wish them to become.

A mother always hurts.

Even when the soul is at its emptiest, there will never be an empty day.

Time is everything.

The world is only as good, as safe, as promising as it is reflected in my children’s eyes and lives.

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