Hey guys welcome back I hope you’re doing well. Today has been quite the day. I feel like I got a lot done. I feel like when I have those moments where I feel like I got a lot done it’s because I was super stressed and I just you know went down my to-do list and I got a lot of things done. But I also feel relaxed which is very new for me. So yeah, it’s just about finding that balance and I feel like I’m getting closer and closer to still getting things accomplished but not being so frantic or not being so extra about it I guess.
It was just a nice day overall. It was a good balance between work and being a mom and getting things done in my house, was just an ideal day. But today I have some fun and some really good topics to chat about relating to this supposed timeline that we have in our minds and we’re going to be talking about crying, as strange as it sounds but you’ll see, we’re going to be talking about acceptance and then ownership when it comes to love.
So, let’s just get into it first topic is settling down at a certain age if it’s good or bad? I think we can all agree it’s pretty bad. I think we need to stop with these fictional timelines in our heads, like who the heck decided these numbers like you have to be married by, have kids by, buy a house by like it’s ridiculous and I feel like it’s getting out of hand. It puts so much pressure on people and if those are your aspirations that’s amazing, work towards your goals but settling for someone today I feel like is only going to put you at a disadvantage later.
We have to stop putting so much … not only pressure but unnecessary pressure on ourselves. I understand as women, you know, we have a biological clock when it comes to having kids but I also know that 1) the scientific advancement and technology growing every single day is making it more possible for women more than ever before to have children at a later age and not to mention there’s adoption as well. And I know if you’re going through this, I am not in your shoes I cannot fully ever relate but I can at least say this … would you really want to have kids with a man that you settled for?
That’s a lifelong relationship to another adult. Coming from the perspective of having a child with someone it’s an incredibly huge responsibility and it is smart to take your time and choose the person you want to have a family with wisely. It’s not something to be taken lightly or settle on.
You may be thinking Mary, how about growing to love someone romantically over time?
I think it’s possible I definitely think you can grow to love someone but do you really want to risk the chance that you will when the stakes are so high? And also, to keep in mind life doesn’t follow a set timeline. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again and again and again because it may hit someone else at a different time, but you are in control of your life solely. Do not depend on anyone else to fulfill this timeline in your head because you are literally depending on an entirely separate human being, really think about that, let that sink in. It really doesn’t make sense when you break it down.
Of course, you need another person to marry or have biological kids with but depending on someone else to fulfill this timeline, this set age that you have in your head may lead to settle, it may end up hurting you at the end. Find a person who you truly enjoy and want a life partnership with. It may take time, it may take effort on your end but in my opinion, I rather wait for someone who felt good in my gut, than settling because it is “time” and then end up regretting things and crying later.
And speaking of crying I’ve been thinking about how many of us parents tend to hide our tears from our kids and I want to know why is that? Why don’t we want our kids to see that?
I started thinking of my own parents. I’ve seen my mom cry probably no more than what I can count on my hands honestly and then my dad rarely like maybe I saw him shed a tear once or twice is max in my whole entire life. And the more I started to think about it, the more I started to feel like it’s actually really important for kids to witness parents cry. But then of course it’s like how much is too much and you know how much struggle should we really show our kids?
That’s something that I’ve thought about before and you can never get a clear-cut answer to it, you don’t really know what’s the best way to go about it but I at least can start to look inward to figure out why it is that I or we want to hide our tears from our kids. And I think a major one is because we need to be strong for them. You know crying is apparently being weak. I think as a society we associate crying as being weak and we don’t want to be weak in front of our kids.
But the more I thought about it, I think it makes it makes us human to them. Parents are people too who go through things, who have feelings, who have emotions, who have struggles. I start to think had I seen my dad especially actually crying in front of me for some reason how … how would that have changed the dynamic that we currently have today? Would our relationship had become stronger perhaps because I would have seen him as more of a human being as someone a bit more relatable to me.
I think it’s important for kids to learn about the duality in the world as well. There’s happy, there’s sad, there’s up and there’s down, one cannot exist without the other. To understand and recognize happiness and success, one has to endure sadness and struggle. As much as I can try to only show the “positive” to my child how will it be positive to him if he doesn’t know what negative is?
Of course, there is a balance. I think if there’s something deeply wrong going on maybe some kind of depression or you’re going through major grief that has really taken a toll on you, I understand not wanting your children to see that of you all of the time they are around you but I think covering up what makes us human takes away a moment or moments that can be shared with our children instead, a teachable moment.
It can be a teachable moment of simply showing them the human in you, a time to be honest where they can respect you more or empathize with you. And of course, it all depends on the context of the situation whatever you feel like is appropriate to share of course you will share with them.
I think it may be even a moment for you to learn as well. I feel like children are one of the most realest groups of people you will ever come across and they may very well teach you something in that moment, it may be exactly what you needed to hear and see. I know I’ve had those moments with Jet and he’s only 3 so I can only imagine when he’s much older.
But I definitely still struggle with the idea of how much I show and how much do I not show. There are definitely moments in my life where I remember things that my parents have shown that I wish maybe didn’t happen so it’s definitely something that I’m conscious about and I’m figuring it out as I go, as I’m sure many of us are.
Before moving on to my last topic of ownership and love which is really like the meat of this episode, I want to talk about acceptance real quick. This may need its own episode in the future but since I spoke about forgiveness in the last episode, I wanted to make sure I mention the next step or the one that goes hand-in-hand with forgiveness and that is acceptance. Even if you have a good relationship and no forgiveness is needed, I pose the question of … do you accept people for who they are whether they are loved ones or not, do you really love them for exactly who they are today?
I struggle with this time to time and I have to remind myself and address because I’m not perfect. I don’t think I accept people all of the time and that’s okay. It’s not something you should judge yourself about, but if you want to accept people, acknowledge it and figure out ways to do that. Look inward, look at the reasons why you aren’t accepting that person or certain people. I think in general we’re so worried about the other person meeting our standard that we forget to love the unique ever-evolving individual sitting in front of us. That also goes with accepting ourselves. We have these standards we create; we don’t meet them, we beat ourselves up, create even higher standards and the cycle keeps going and going.
I also think we forget that people change, especially with this whole cancel culture nowadays, I think we forget that we are evolving creatures. And I understand there are legitimate situations out there where people are canceled for good reason, I understand but just the general idea that someone has done what they done, they did what we wanted which was apologize but then we’re still not okay with it. I think that’s incredibly toxic and I only see it getting worse, to be honest. I just don’t understand how are we supposed to move forward, how are they supposed to move forward in that situation.
Overall I just wanted to quickly mention it, if you want me to dedicate more time to this topic please let me know and I will do so.
Okay, so this is the topic that I really wanted to talk about today which is ownership and love. Just the idea of being possessive it really begins with romantic relationships. Even saying like oh that’s my man or my girl or when a guy asks you out or when you ask out a guy, can you be mine, Valentine’s Day, he’s mine, be mine, the idea of even that’s my other half, just this neediness this like people needing each other so badly or almost like being each other’s property. And I have trouble with it because then these romantic relationships evolve to having kids and when kids come into the picture, I’m now seeing how that gets carried along to them. I believe that many of us think that we own our kids. In reality, I don’t think we do.
I know in traditional parenting there’s this dynamic of parents being the authority and you know what they say go and children just have to follow through. Kids aren’t thought to have their own thoughts and if they do, they aren’t really greatly considered. I totally get that parents are children’s first teacher but, in my opinion, I think Jet is my teacher as much as I am his teacher. And before I even go further let me say a disclaimer. These are only my opinions. I know parenting subjects can be touchy. I am in no way saying my way is better, I am just expressing my thoughts in case someone finds them interesting and gets inspired. It’s just my perspective.
But to move on from that, kids aren’t objects we can just change as we wish. I think many of us get so obsessed with creating this perfect image of what we think our child should be rather than who they actually are. And I think that’s because 1) we generally think kids don’t know anything and we can and should mold them into the best and 2) we think kids are a reflection of us. Let’s be real we don’t want to get embarrassed by our kids right we want our kids to be the most behaved in the entire room, to get the biggest trophy. to be the politest. But what does that say about us? It’s our ego. Our ego gets in the way and blocks the child from flourishing and being who they are in their truest form.
It not only puts pressure on parents, but it also puts the pressure on the child. Imagine trying to constantly live up to what your parents want you to be like. More than likely if you are doing that to your kids unintentionally, it was done to you by your parents.
It’s not fun to live up to and behave exactly how your parents want you to be. It’s tough to be the child they want instead of who they have. And I get it, I’ve been there you don’t ever feel good enough which then creates a whole other set of problems. And I’m not saying to have your kids run wild, it’s a balance, you know everything has its balance. Boundaries are fine, guidelines are fine, both of those things are actually great for the child to thrive.
But in those moments of wanting to discipline or correct a child what I try to do anyways is to seek what’s underneath that behavior, yours and the child’s. See what’s really going on, try to figure out why am I letting this get to me.
Let’s say for example your toddler throws a toy and stomps away right, or let’s say you have an older child who just slams the door in your face or whatever the case may be. Try your best to not take things personally, don’t immediately jump to “oh he disrespected me.” You have got to take that ego out. It’s really hard in those heated moments to not take it personally but really try next time. See how your perspective can change on the situation if you don’t take it as a personal attack and instead try to find out why the behavior occurred in the first place on both ends.
Also, remember if we get super upset or triggered by our child’s behavior or misbehavior remember that we got triggered because of ourselves, it wasn’t a child at all. Think about that for a bit. We control our thoughts and emotions right? Not the child. And we make a choice to react the way we do.
So to tie all together, I’m trying to explain what I’ve been seeing in my own mind I guess in how our relationship with our kids are very similar to relationships with other people, whether romantic or not because the same thing I said with our children, it can also be said for adults.
I shouldn’t take someone else’s behavior that seems to be against me so personal instead, I should take a breath, and try to understand their behavior instead of just jumping to the conclusion that it’s a personal attack. So, try to step away and think about why did I decide to take that personally and also begin to think of why did the other person behave in the manner in which they did.
I’m just starting to understand the cycle more, whether it’s in my family or the things I’ve seen over time as well with other people. I think ownership plays a huge part in the problem in relationships in general because let’s say you grew up in an environment in which it’s normal for people around you to be possessive in a romantic relationship, this is what you see, this is what you grew up in and it’s okay, it’s accepted. And you also feel like you’re being owned, you’re the child, parents have to tell you what to do, you have to follow what they say, you have to try to reach their expectations and if you don’t there will be consequences. Same thing, and then how do you not expect that child to then grow up to then do the same thing to other people? And have these expectations, to try to change people, and then more than likely get let down because you’re so focused on creating an image or you’re so focused on someone else trying to fit in into your box or set of standards that you just don’t recognize the person for who they actually are.
I’m trying my best to break that cycle and I hope it works out. I don’t want to teach him you should expect people to change in certain ways to meet your standards. I want to allow him to just be him.
Overall, I’m just trying my best not to be so possessive over my child and allow him the opportunity to just be him and see what happens. I am trying a different style from what my parents did. My parents are still pretty flexible, they weren’t super traditional either but I’m going to be taking it a step further because there were definitely some expectations there and I’m hoping with this route I’m allowing him to just be him and then when he grows up and decides to create a family of his own he’s not out there trying to change someone else.
I think the change needs to start somewhere and I hope I’m doing right by him. And this can go on and on honestly when it comes to disciplining there’s a lot of different information out there. Once again my take on things may not be the best or I’m not trying to say that it is the best but it is a different perspective than traditional parenting so, take it as you wish. I found that it has worked for me and my family. As always and I’m always an advocate for whatever works for you and your family, keep doing that.
Okay so now we’re moving on to our Project Learn You question let’s see what I pull out. Okay, so I have here “what pushes your buttons that doesn’t need to?”
I think what pushes my buttons that doesn’t need to of course is going to deal with not caring about what people think but there is one thing that I guess people can easily touch on and it has to do with saying or insinuating that stay-at-home moms don’t do anything as if it’s like a simple job.
If someone wants to push my buttons it’s definitely talking about that or saying like “what did you all day” or “oh that’s all you did” as if I lead a super easy life and don’t get me wrong I’m grateful, I’m blessed for being a stay-at-home mom, it was my choice to do so but I think when people start talking about in such a negative way it definitely pushes my buttons a bit and it shouldn’t. I shouldn’t care what other people have to say about the lifestyle that I run especially because it was my choice it’s not like I’m trapped, and I have to stay at home. I made this choice and if I wanted to change my mind, I very well could. I have a family that supports me thankfully, and if I wanted to join the workforce literally tomorrow my family would be on board and help me take care of Jordan immediately. But I just think it’s the idea of stay-at-home moms, the negative views that some people may have about them rubs me the wrong way. So I’ll say that but I need to get over it because you know what f*** them like a who are they to say what I do in my everyday life you know? Why should it bother me? But think about that today and see how you can improve in any way.
But that is it you guys, that wraps up episode 3. If you have any questions connect with me at motherhoodhappened.com, you can also reach out to me if you have any amazing questions or stories you want to share on this podcast. Don’t forget to sign up for my free 7-Day mindfulness challenge where I challenge you to reprogram your mind, to see how a shift in your mindset can really make a difference. You can also get exclusive access to other free materials while you’re there. I would love your support if you can subscribe, share, rate and review, tell me what you like and even what you don’t like wherever you hear your podcast I would so appreciate it. Thank you so much for listening, until next time.