1. Tomorrow is a new day! – Cue little red-haired, ringlet topped Annie singing, “The sun’ll come out tomorrow… so ya gotta hang on tïll tomorrow… I love ya Tomorrow! You’re always a day a way!” That kid had a lot of good advice for parents. What is the end of the world as we know it one moment, can, in a matter of 24 hours (with a good night’s sleep in there somewhere – hopefully) become a small hiccup the next. Perspective and time are our best friends – don’t forget to hold them close when you need them.
2. Be Kind to yourself – Some days you won’t FEEL loved, valued or cared for. Maybe the hubby and you had a little disagreement over the colour of what used to be the whites, your hormones are rampaging and at least one of the children has physically collided with you in some painful way. The TRUTH is that you are loved by your family and it doesn’t hurt to take a little time out to love yourself too when you need it. Grab a coffee; organize a massage or head to the hairdresser. A happy mum makes for a happy home.
3. Mini-Not-Me – When my daughter was born, she had orange/red hair. It was a complete shock to us as my husband and I have dark hair. I often muse that it was God’s way of reminding me that she was not a mini-me. You see, when I first had children I just assumed (fairly ignorantly) that they would be Mini-Me’s and Mini-His’s but they are not. They are Mini-Them’s. Which means they have their own unique way of thinking and their own loves. It is a challenge to not re-do our childhood through our kids. Our job is to steward the precious lives we are given as they grow to become the unique individuals they were born to be.
4. Moments Matter – I am a fairly busy person, I like that. But the downside is that I can be constantly caught in thinking about the future; planning, organizing, reading…whatever, but I have found myself at times not living in the moment. Not stopping for the cuddles, not taking the time to speak life, love and joy into my family’s hearts. These moments are what keep us connected as a family and it is important to honour them by making the most of the time we have together.
5. Love is a choice – I read once that the most asked question on Google is “what is love?” It is a good question. Real love is unconditional and it is chosen every day. In our house we do grace, forgiveness, kindness, respect… these are just some of the actions that spring from unconditional love. All are choices that each member makes (or is gently reminded to make) in amongst our daily interactions. Love must be cultivated in the home or it will disappear all too quickly in the daily grind of life. It does not matter how successful we are or how tidy our homes look or what we wear. All that anyone really wants is to feel loved for who they are – unconditional love is the answer.