Reflections on Motherhood for 2011

Photography from iStockphoto.com

I’m not a fan of resolutions, New Year’s or otherwise. My conscience just cannot take the pressure and guilt when I inevitably fail at keeping them. So there will be no resolutions for me this January 1st. But I wish you good luck with your gym membership/diet/daily correspondence with your mother.

Reflection, on the other hand, is something I can dig. I learned some things in 2011—about myself and about my children—and the only thing I hope as far as betterment for 2012 goes, is that I am able to apply what I have learned and keep us happily moving forward.

Here’s what 2011 taught me:

• My girls love the pink plastic junk and there’s nothing I can do about it. Barbie now has her dream house, her car, her scooter and her androgynous life partner—it’s enough. Thankfully, my hippie/punk/feminist leanings can be soothed by the knowledge that they also love colouring, crafts and their wooden foodstuffs. Balance—it’s key.

• My kids are resilient. We uprooted their entire lives on little more than a whim this year, and they are thriving. They don’t care about where they live, they just care that their home is a happy, cozy one.

• My kids can do stuff on their own. My 4-year-old’s motivation to wipe her own bum may be that the longer I stay asleep, the longer she can watch TV in the morning, but whatever. The point is, she can do it herself. (And I can sleep for 15 minutes longer.)

• Just when you are having an existential crisis about institutionalizing your child and taking away her freedom (i.e. putting her in school), your daughter will come home and tell you how much she likes being the kid who enforces the “QUIET!” rule when other kids are talking during the announcements.

• I am not a super awesome amazing stay-at-home mum. But I’m a decent one. Maybe even a good one. I’m glad I’m doing it. For me, it’s not harder than being a worker bee—leaving my children at 7 a.m. and not seeing them until 5 p.m. at which time I had to make dinner, take care of the house, prepare for the next day and try to squeeze in a few minutes with my kids—that was way harder. This is good. Even if I haven’t been able to drink a hot coffee in about five months.

• I have good kids. Really good kids. I need to remember that when the tiny frustrations threaten to drown my good humour. I’m lucky.

So, what has 2011 taught you? And have you made any New Year’s resolutions?

Karen Green recently traded life in the biggest city in Canada for life in the biggest cornfield in Canada. Freed from her full-time job as a writer and editor, Karen now spends her time…writing and editing. And frolicking in the leaves with her two small girls. Karen is a speaker, the founder of Mom The Vote and the author of the blog, The Kids Are Alright, where she has been writing about the humorous and poignant moments of family life since 2005. She is thrilled to be a part of canadianfamily.ca.

One response to “Reflections on Motherhood for 2011”

  1. Alex says:

    2011 taught me that I’m lucky I get to be home with my kids, and that I need to refocus. Like you, I’m not big on resolutions but I’ve made a couple for this coming year and have already started on the road to them. Feels good.

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