That’s a question I was asking myself today while perusing those boring crunchy momma blogs with lists of “10 things” that I mindlessly read in a daily basis to procrastinate washing dishes or folding laundry.
So it got me thinking that I am witnessing 4 generations of mothering styles in my life right now. I’ve heard my grandma tell about her mother and how she did things. I’ve heard her also tell of how she parented my mother. I’ve also heard my mothers side if the story of her own childhood. I’ve lived my own childhood and witnessed that mothering firsthand. And now I’m living my own mothering experience. So with that said, when my daughter is 30 with her own children, I can’t help but wonder what kinds of things she’ll say about the way I have raised her.
Sadly I wasted 10 years of my adulthood blaming my parents for every single anxiety attack and 100 lbs if excess fat on my body. When in actuality, that’s not really fair. Granted, a lot of the way I am is a direct result of the way I was parented but now I’m older and I’m learning to take responsibility for my adult actions and sometimes it sucks. But sometimes it’s so liberating to say “Yep, I did that” and then moving on.
My daughter witnesses me daily loving my body and caring for it. She also has witnessed the sad days when I lived under the gray cloud of depression and self hate. I pray daily that that was too long ago and that she’ll forget that awful stage of my life. I pray she won’t think about all the times I wouldn’t let her have Mountain Dew and that she’ll remember the times I let her stay up a little later than usual on those nights because her behavior was so good that it earned her some extra snuggles and reading time.
I pray that she doesn’t remember the mommy who agonizes over eating more than one cookie and the guilt her mommy felt afterwards. I pray she remembered her mommy letting her crack the eggs and smell the vanilla while wearing her plain old apron dusted with flour.
I pray that she never knew how sad her mommy was when she fixed square meals for her and her brother while her daddy was working those long hours into the night. But instead I pray that she knows how much her daddy loves her, her brother and mommy and those strong callused hands that tuck her in on the nights that he is able to be home.
I pray that she never sees a woman by the size of her body. Instead when pointing her out uses words like “the one with the pretty hair, or the one with the happy laugh.”
I pray that she never remembers the frustrated angry shouts that would spew from her mommy’s mouth in the early days when everything was a struggle for her mommy. Instead I pray she remembers the beautiful and sometimes obnoxious song lyrics and wild booty shaking her mommy did at the stove while cooking.
I pray she looks in the mirror and never hears a voice in her head telling her she’s not worthy or not pretty enough. I pray that she hears her mommy’s voice over and over saying “You are beautiful. You are so smart. I love you. I am proud of you. You deserve all the riches and happiness in the world because you are enough!”