This Mom has asked to remain anonymous, but I will say that she is a great friend of mine who is easy to talk to and who's parenting thoughts and advice I greatly value. She also takes great pictures!
Today's Interview with a Mom:
How many children do you have, and what are their ages?
I have 3, they are 9, 7 and 4.
How would you describe yourself as a parent, or your parenting style, in a few sentences?
What, in your opinion, is the greatest thing about being a parent?
Having someone love you unconditionally and getting to witness them grow. And Cuddling!
Tell me about one of the funniest incidents you can remember involving your kids.
Just lots of small, funny moments. For example, a few weeks ago the kids went to bed very late and got up very early. They were hungry so I told them they could help themselves to bananas or yogurt, but I wasn't getting out of bed until 9:00 to get them a full breakfast. I heard my oldest say "our mom is so uncaring and lazy." Ha ha! He apologized on his own initiative later, but unfortunately I couldn't stop laughing and I laughed about it for a few days!
Tell me about one of the saddest/scariest incidents you can remember involving your kids.
With two of my pregnancies I had bleeding and spotting. Right after my second child was born, my best friend's baby died in NICU. Two other good friends had late miscarriages that same month. All these experiences taught me the value and preciousness of life, to be present, and live life with an open hand and try not to worry.
What was your favourite lullaby to sing to your children?
Ooh, I’m not much of a singer, but because all three of my kids were horrible sleepers I have spent many hours in the rocking chair with lullaby CDs on! My favourite is “It’s a Big World” by Renee & Jeremy. I also like to put on Steve Bell or the Dave Matthews Band. (And on the topic of bad sleepers, it took me until my third child to change my focus – to stop being frustrated about the lack of sleep and to utilize that time to pray and to just enjoy the snuggles.)
What is your favourite book to read to your children?
Oh my goodness it is impossible to narrow it down! For babies I like the DK Touch & Feel or Lift the Flaps. When a new baby is on the way I love “What’s Inside?” and “And After That” by Jeanne Ashbe. For young children I like “Off We Go!” by Beverly Abramson and “I Love Our Earth” by Bill Martin Jr.. For early readers we like “Piggy & Dad” by David Martin. Now that the kids are older they are into Peanuts, but we like “The Incredible Book Eating Boy” by Oliver Jeffers and “Don’t Grown ups Ever Have Fun?” by Jamie Harper
What is the most significant thing you learned about parenting from your own parents?
There are so many things. But three pieces of good advice/sayings we were given when we became parents were: 1. Kids bring out the best in you, kids bring out the worst in you. 2. When young kids are whiny, it is usually because they are either tired or hungry, so try to be patient. 3. It will surprise you when your best friends become parents and you don’t share parenting styles – and you thought you had so much in common. (It is a hard balance to be confident in your choices, but to also respect other people’s choices.)
Do you think it's harder or easier to be a mother now than it was when your parents were raising you? Why?
Both. Easier because parents weren’t bombarded with information and choices they have to sift through. Harder because there wasn’t a global community: if you were living in an area where other parents were a lot different than you, it would be hard to find and connect with other parents with the same values as you.
What is the most important thing you hope to teach your children before they leave your home? What dreams do you have for your children?
To love God, be kind & hardworking, serve others, and be happy.
What is your favourite parenting book?
People often have a favourite parenting book. However, the success/relating to a parenting book depends on the parenting style of the parent and the parenting style the book’s message gives. So my favourite parenting book is “Sacred Parenting” by Gary Thomas. It changed my life and it applies to everyone. It takes the focus off of trying to fix your kids’ problems and onto turning yourself into a better parent.
What is one piece of advice you would give to a new parent?
After you have a baby, do not lift anything for 6 weeks! I often see new moms carrying around their toddlers the same week they have given birth! No, no, no, no! It is very hard not to carry around a sibling or do certain housework for 6 weeks, but for the sake of your pelvic floor, you must. Your toddler can climb up to you on the couch and cuddle with you. You can put a chair in front of the crib and the child can climb in for their nap. Let your husband do all the lifting when he gets home.
Thank you for doing this interview with me! I'm still on the look-out for Moms to interview, so please email me if you're interested, or comment on this post!