Wednesday, May 9, 2012

What  I  Am  Not  |  Tricia  Goyer

  Welcome  to  Pearl  GirlsTM  Mother  of  Pearl  Mother's  Day  blog  series  -­‐  a  week  long   celebration  of  moms  and  mothering.  Each  day  will  feature  a  new  post  by  some  of   today's  best  writer's  (Tricia  Goyer,  Sheila  Walsh,  Suzanne  Woods  Fisher,  Bonnie  St.   John,  and  more).  I  hope  you'll  join  us  each  day  for  another  unique  perspective  on   Mother's  Day.
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  What  I   Am  Not  by  Tricia  Goyer
  Becoming  a  mother  is  a  complicated  thing.  Not  only  am  I  trying  to  negotiate  a   relationship  with  my  child,  I  am  trying  to  negotiate  a  relationship  with  myself  as  I   attempt  to  determine  how  I  mother,  how  I  feel  about  mothering,  how  I  want  to   mother  and  how  I  wish  I  was  mothered.
  — Andrea  J.  Buchanan,  in  Mother  Shock3
  Sometimes  the  easiest  way  to  discover  who  we  are  is  to  know  who  we  are   not.
  •  We  are  not  our  children.  We  all  know  mothers  who  go  overboard  trying   to  make  themselves  look  good  by  making  their  children  look  great.  I  saw  one  woman   on  the  Oprah  television  show  who  had  bought  her  preschool  daughter  more  than   twelve  pairs  of  black  shoes  just  so  the  girl  could  have  different  styles  to  go  with  her   numerous  outfits!  Just  as  we  -­‐don’t  get  report  cards  for  mothering,  we  also  -­‐don’t  get   graded  on  our  child’s  looks  or  accomplishments.  While  you  want  your  children  to  do   their  best  and  succeed  in  life,  your  self-­‐esteem  -­‐shouldn’t  be  wrapped  up  in  your   child.
  Life  as  I  See  It:
  My  individuality  will  never  end.  There  will  be  no  one  exactly  like  me,  not  even   my  child.  She  will  be  like  me  in  some  ways,  but  not  at  all  in  others.  I  -­‐wouldn’t  have   it  any  other  way.
  — Desiree,  Texas
  •  We  are  not  our  mothers.  I  remember  the  first  time  I  heard  my  mother’s   voice  coming  out  of  my  mouth.  The  words  “because  I  told  you  so  . . .”  escaped  before   I  had  a  chance  to  squelch  them.
  It’s  not  until  we  have  kids  that  we  truly  understand  our  mothers — all  their  frets,   their  nagging,  and  their  worries.
  It’s  also  then  that  we  truly  understand  their  love.
  Since  you  are  now  a  mother,  it’s  good  to  think  back  on  how  you  were  raised.  If  there   were  traditions  or  habits  that  now  seem  wise  and  useful,  incorporate  them  into  your   parenting.  You  also  have  permission  to  sift  out  things  you  now  know  -­‐weren’t  good.   Just  because  you’re  a  product  of  your  mother,  that  -­‐doesn’t  mean  you  have  to  turn   out  just  like  her.  Repeat  after  me,  “I  am  not  my  mother.”
  •  We  are  not  like  any  other  mother  out  there.  Sometimes  you  may  feel  like   the  world’s  worst  mother.  After  all,  your  friend  never  yells  at  her  son — and   sometimes  you  do.  Then  again,  your  friend  may  feel  bad  because  you  have  a   wonderful  bedtime  routine  that  includes  stories  and  songs.  In  many  cases,  the  moms   you  feel  inferior  to  only  look  like  they  have  it  together.  All  moms  feel  they  -­‐don’t   “measure  up.”  Instead  of  feeling  unworthy,  we  should  realize  that  everyone  has   strengths  and  weaknesses.  The  key  is  where  we  place  our  focus.
  The  Bible  says,  “Let’s  just  go  ahead  and  be  what  we  were  made  to  be,  without  . . .   comparing  ourselves  with  each  other,  or  trying  to  be  something  we  -­‐aren’t”   (Romans  12:5 – 6,  MESSAGE).
  The  problem  with  comparison  is,  we  always  measure  our  weaknesses   against  the  strengths  of  others.
  Instead,  we  need  to  thank  God  for  our  strengths.  We  can  also  ask  God  to  help  us   overcome  our  weaknesses — not  because  we  want  to  compare  ourselves,  or  look   good  in  someone  else’s  eyes,  but  because  we  want  to  be  the  best  mom  out  there.
  Tricia  Goyer  is  a  CBA  best-­‐selling  author  and  the  winner  of  two  American   Christian  Fiction  Writers’  Book  of  the  Year  Awards  (Night  Song  and  Dawn  of  a   Thousand  Nights).  She  co-­‐wrote  3:16  Teen  Edition  with  Max  Lucado  and   contributed  to  the  Women  of  Faith  Study  Bible.  Also  a  noted  marriage  and  parenting   writer,  she  lives  with  her  husband  and  children  in  Arkansas.  You  can  find  her  online   at or  at  her   weekly  radio  show,  Living  Inspired.
  Exciting  News  –  the  latest  Pearl  Girls  book,  Mother  of  Pearl:  Luminous  Legacies  and   Iridescent  Faith  will  be  released  this  month!  Please  visit  the  Pearl   Girls  Facebook  Page  (and  LIKE  us!)  for  more  information!  Thanks  so  much  for   your  support!

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