The way we talk to our children becomes their inner voice. – Peggy O’Mara
Let’s analyze this for a second. Why do seemingly innocent motherhood quotes like this make me anxious? Anyone else feel this way? Motherhood quotes usually get under my skin just a little bit.
That is, unless they’re honest.
I saw this particular motherhood quote on facebook today, and I immediately gasped inwardly.
I thought, “Oh no. My children are ruined forever.”
It’s not because I feel like I am a horrible mom or that I talk to them in some demeaning way, but, it definitely made me feel anxious just reading it.
I guess it is because I am an over-analyzer (especially of myself) by nature, and when something makes me analyze even more, then that is not good for me.
However, the normal mom probably looks at this and thinks, “I’m such a good Mommy then! My kids will always love themselves because I say positive things everyday to my children”.
OK, I know no one says that, but in my head, that’s what other mothers are saying. Except for the really bad ones that are demeaning and horrible to their kids, of course.
The truth is, while motherhood quotes like that make me anxious, I do try to recognize that my children have innocent little spirits that can be influenced by what I say and do. Which is why it causes me anxiety.
I think motherhood quotes should inspire us to do better and be better (and not feel like a failure!)
Recently, I noticed that I was saying to my three year old, “What is wrong with you?” when he would do naughty things.
And, by naught things, I mean write on his brand new bedspread with a permanent marker the first day we put it on his bed kind of stuff. You know, he’s a kid. He acts before he thinks.
But, I noticed that this phrase was coming out of my mouth a lot.
I also noticed that he would make a very sad face when I would say it, which wracked me with mommy guilt.
So, I have since changed the phrase to be slightly more positive and say, “What were you thinking?” Not sure that is much better, but I’m working on it.
This quote about motherhood is just one example that came up in my life today that reminded me of the inner anxiety I feel on a daily basis being responsible for raising three human beings.
Why can’t I just let go and not worry about damaging my children forever? Thoughts like this are what keeps me up at night. Baby steps, I know. Baby steps.
But, here are a few motherhood quotes I love. They make me feel less alone, inspired, and NORMAL.
“Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials.” —Meryl Streep
“My children do not need me to save them. My children need to watch me save myself.” – Glennon Doyle
“A mother’s love liberates.” —Maya Angelou
“The fastest way to break the cycle of perfectionism and become a fearless mother is to give up the idea of doing it perfectly—indeed to embrace uncertainty and imperfection.” —Arianna Huffington
“You go through big chunks of time where you’re just thinking, ‘This is impossible—oh, this is impossible.’ And then you just keep going and keep going, and you sort of do the impossible.” – Tiny Fey
“You’re going to get advice from a lot of people, and you can take bits and pieces, but you know innately what your child needs. You should trust that.” – Lucy Liu
“Every day when you’re raising kids, you feel like you could cry or crack up and just scream ‘This is ridiculous!’ because there’s so much nonsense, whether it’s what they’re saying to you or the fact that there’s avocado or poop on every surface.” – Kristen Bell
“One can’t truly know what kind of person one is until one’s child announces she can’t find her soccer jersey at 9pm. Turns out I’m a mean kind of person.” — Glennon Doyle
“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.” –Bréne Brown
“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” –Ann Lamont
“To be a good parent, you need to take care of yourself so that you can habe the physical and emotional energy to take care of your family.” – Michelle Obama
“There will be so many time you feel like you failed. But in the eyes, ears, and mind of your child, you are a supermom.” – Stephanie Precourt
“Being a mother is discovering strengths you didn’t know you had, and dealing with fears you never knew existed.” — Sherene Simon
“Motherhood is the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary — it’s an act of infinite optimism.” – Gilda Radner
“Motherhood is hard, but your struggle doesn’t have to be yours alone.” – Brene Brown
“Everything grows rounder and wider and weirder, and I sit here in the middle of it all and wonder who in the world you will turn out to be.” — Carrie Fisher
“Expectations are resentments waiting to happen.” Anne Lamott
“Strong mothers raise strong daughters.” – Jessica A. Lane.
“If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?” – Milton Berle.
“The way we speak to our children might become their inner voice or they might just roll their eyes one day at all the things mom said and become their own unique person because moms shouldn’t put that much pressure on themselves anyway.” – Meredith Ethington
Life is too short to feel like a failure from a few quotes on motherhood.
Instead, re-write them yourself. You know yourself best. You know your children best. Find inspiration in your own heart. And don’t rely on a quote on motherhood to make you feel good about the job that you’re doing as a mother.
I promise, you’re enough.