“A lot of mothers will do anything for their children, except let them be themselves.”
― Banksy, Wall and Piece
I read that quote the other day and it really made me stop and think about things. The kids are growing up and becoming themselves. It is hard to know when to quit pushing as a mother. I find it difficult to distinguish between what is our personal agenda as parents and our duty to encourage our kids’ natural abilities by giving them opportunities they might not know they want. I remember being the little girl that was dragged to piano lessons, but I know why. I understand what my mother was doing and it was not what I thought at the time.
This past weekend the kids wanted to take my photo. I let them even though I had not put any lipstick on. Kieran took this shot with my camera and when he saw the back of the camera he asked me if I was going to put it online. He was proud of the photo and proud that I am his mom. I tried to see me the way he did. It was hard.
Then I thought about my own mother. She is so beautiful. I don’t see her wrinkles. I never questioned what my mother chose to wear or her favourite authors. I never thought she should play soccer instead of tennis. I accept my mother the way she is. I love her for her whole self.
And my kids love me that way too. They don’t see the grey hairs (they are giving me) and my wrinkles. They don’t focus on my love handles and have never suggested I go and change my outfit. They cheer me on from the sidelines even though I am not the fastest runner…they just know I love to run.
I have a lot to learn as a parent from how my kids love me. So while I will try to respect what they choose to wear, I will continue to require that my kids try different things. They are still going to have to eat their vegetables. I am just going to keep my ears wide open so I can hear what they are really saying to me about themselves when they don’t.
*PS The dog is pretty good at that unconditional love thing too.