The other day I was at a pool with my children and my husband. I noticed a mom of two small toddlers. I noticed as she prepared them for the water with their floaties, she put the small rafts in the water and she positioned them just so. Without any help at all she walked through the water with them, playing, and paying close attention to both of them.
After a while, I watched as she brought them back out of the water. One of the toddlers was fussy; she was cleverly able to distract the child and the toddler began to laugh. I observed as she changed their clothes, each one waiting for the other; she gave them a toy to play with while the other was being dressed. She set them both up in their strollers, packed everything and headed out. I was walking towards her and I could not help but stop her. I said, "Excuse me ma'am, but I just had to stop you for a moment." She looked concerned. I continued, "I have four children all two years apart my youngest is now 11. I remember what it was like at the pool handling them all at the same time. I just had to stop you to say you are doing an excellent job as a mom. I know how hard it is and you need to know how well you are doing it."
She looked at me in disbelief and could barely mumble a thank you. As I walked away I felt goosebumps on my arms, and I almost cried.
Being a mom is a thankless job, but the most important job a woman can ever hold. We try the best we can to do the best we can and walk that tightrope between discipline, and spoiling because we want to raise well-adjusted adults. When the children are little it is physically and emotionally draining. As they age the trying times change but they never end. I remember being told before that I was doing a good job as a mom and it stuck with me. For someone from the outside to say such a thing truly moved me. They gained nothing from saying it so it must have been true from their perspective.
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We read constantly about the bad things in this world, murder, abuse, and neglect. It is important to see the good and to point it out when we see it. Catch a mom doing something good and tell her. Moms want to do the right thing, but we fail often and wonder if we have messed up our children in the process. To hear a stranger point out something good we did makes an impression that will last a lifetime.
Look for moms with their children. Watch for a kind action or something that is good about their relationship: a hug, a smile, the way they choose to handle their children without anger. Tell that mom how well she is doing. It only takes a moment to you but it will last a lifetime for her. Try it today.
Copyright 2016 Lori Hadorn-Disselkamp
About the Author
Lori Hadorn-Disselkamp - mom of 4 teens/wife for 20+ years. Lori has been writing at her own website Faith Filled Mom. She writes about the journey of faith we live daily and the ability to recognize God. She is a retreat director at Sacred Heart Academy HS. She just earned her MA in Pastoral Ministry as well as a certification in spiritual direction.