Becoming a new mother is filled with so much growth. From the moment you become pregnant, things start to change slowly. You realize that the world no longer revolves around you. With that, you begin to notice just how much your mother went through to get you to where you are today.
I have always had a close relationship with my mom. I was keenly aware of how lucky I was to have a mom I enjoyed being around throughout my childhood and adulthood. A mom I considered a friend. But it wasn’t until I had a baby of my own that I truly understood that closeness and what it meant for my life, my relationship, and my children.
How Motherhood Strengthened My Bond With My Mom
Her birth experience helped me with my own.
Unfortunately, my mom had a traumatic birth experience with me. She had an unknown blood disorder that caused many complications, leaving me in the NICU and her in the hospital for months (with a 1-year-old at home). But, because she went through that, I was able to get tested for the disorder and take medications to ensure the same trauma did not happen to me. This was the first time I realized how much mothers sacrifice for their children. I finally understood how that sacrifice truly begins before birth. When I became pregnant, I instantly adopted this same mentality. It didn’t matter if I had to take daily injections or see a specialist once a week, as long as my baby was happy and healthy.
I can appreciate the way I was raised.
Many people raise their children differently than the way their parents raised them. They find faults in their upbringing that they want to change with their kids. As my eldest daughter has started to get older and I’ve had to implement proper parenting techniques, it’s occurred to me just how grateful I am to have my mother as a role model. It has made parenting come naturally to me. When I feel overwhelmed or unfit, I channel my moms’ positive attitude (and text her to complain) and always feel better. I can’t thank my mom enough for giving me the gift of good parenting.
I know how hard it can be—but that it can be done.
My brother and I are 13 months apart (Irish twins!). I often find myself asking her how in the world she handled two babies basically the same age. Her response is always, “I just did it and it was the best years of my life.” I am not as easy-going as my mom. So when I have hard days, I often remember her saying this. It reminds me that everything will be worth it, no matter how impossible it may seem right now.
Things are more enjoyable with her.
The only person in this world who may love my children as much as my husband and I do is my mother. I love recounting stories of our day. I love telling her the funny thing my 2-year-old said and showing her the countless photos I took. While others may laugh or smile at a photo, my mom is genuinely enamored by them. She is proud of every little accomplishment they make. I often feel like I get to enjoy things twice—when they happen and when I get to tell her about it.
My kids get to have her, too.
Before I had kids, my husband and I lived in a different state from my mom. As soon as we got married and decided to start a family, I knew I needed to be closer to her. I spent my entire adult life away from her, so it wasn’t a need for a babysitter or a sign of dependence. Instead, I knew that my kids would need her the same way I do. I wanted to give them that. Seeing the way my daughters’ faces light up when she walks in the room and the way she knows exactly what to say and what to do with them fills me with so much joy. Seeing how much my kids love her has made me appreciate having her as my mother even more.
I’m very aware that not everyone is lucky to have a mother they can depend on and who they truly love to be around. I have not always appreciated my mother for everything she is and everything she has done for me. But now, as a mother myself, I know I will spend the rest of our lives making sure she knows just how much she means to me and how special our closeness really is.