Lately I’ve been thinking of the importance of having mother mentors. I have a handful of them, and I will forever be grateful that God placed them in my path. I know them in person and I witness the way they parent and the joy they find in their family. Some are relatives, some are friends I’ve met through our church or school.
I was thinking of what they have in common with each other;
-They don’t have perfect kids, because no kids are perfect. But they take the responsibility of raising good kids-they have children (or young adults now) with a work ethic, children with manners, children who respect authority, children who are welcoming to others, children who are kind. They have strong sets of values. They teach their kids that they have a responsibility to their parents and to society as a whole to be a contributor. They keep their children young-no growing up too fast as the culture would dictate today. They have a strong belief system. They place value on children in general, and teach their children a deep respect for life.
-They spend most of their time with their children. They enjoy doing so.
-They are almost all a little older than I am, and have kids that are a few years or many years ahead of my kids-they have journeyed further and therefore have a broad view of what really matters.
-They would humbly reject that they should ever be anyone’s mentor, or that they ever knew what they were doing. But they are, and they did-because they started out parenting with a sense of what was right and wrong, and an innate sense of the truth of what a child needs. So even when they had pressure from the culture, they knew “this is the way we do things in this house”. They seemed to not be interested in ever “keeping up” with what anyone else was doing. Home is the center, the axis, the foundation of all that is good, and parents were/are there, cultivating that “home base”.
When I am feeling overwhelmed, or maybe I had just entered a new stage of parenting these are the moms I go to with questions. Questions as trivial as household systems management (meals or laundry) or as big as navigating the teen years. It is so nice to have the reassurance and reminders, to continue on the course, or to take the other path, or to get a little boost of confidence when I have needed it and felt unsure of what I was doing.