With my oldest child saying goodbye to toddlerhood, I can’t help but feel very emotional. I’ve asked myself countless of times… where did those 4 precious years go? I cannot, for the life of me, believe she just turned 4 when I seriously feel like I’ve just given birth to her yesterday. It may sound like a cliché but that is exactly how I feel right now. I never believed people when they say that kids do grow up too fast; now I do! To celebrate the 4 AMAZING years my daughter has given me, I want to share with you 4 important mom lessons I learned after being a mom for 4 years, which every mom must know.
Mom Lesson #1: Learn To Forgive Yourself
This is probably the most important mom lesson that you have to learn. You must realize that there is no such thing as a perfect mom. You’re going to make mistakes, tons and tons of them; bad days with your child are inevitable; your patience is going to be tested ALL THE TIME; your child is going to get hurt just because you turned around for a few seconds. With all the craziness and chaos that come with motherhood, despite your best efforts, you must remember to forgive yourself every single day; and strive to be better the next day.
It took me a while to realize this. I’ve always blamed and criticized myself for things I’ve done and I failed to do. I was always hard on myself because I had a “high standard” of what I should be as a mom; and it was a horrible feeling. It’s like I’m carrying a heavy weight with me every single day. Realizing what my mistakes were and what I failed to do, and not blaming myself for everything is a very liberating feeling. And coming to terms with this mom lesson was one of the best things I did for myself as a mom.
Mom Lesson #2: You Are The Best In Their Eyes
Yes, there is no such thing as a perfect mom; but you must know this second mom lesson. In the eyes of your child, you are perfect. You are their role model. Don’t feel bad if you can’t come up with crafts to do every week, if you can’t bake a cupcake, let alone decorate one, if dishes keep piling up at the sink, or if you have 4 weeks worth of unsorted and unfolded laundry. You don’t have to be a Pinterest perfect mom; because they don’t exist. If they do, there’s probably a handful of them. And even so, you shouldn’t feel bad about yourself because of what you cannot do.
Just focus on the one thing that you (and only you can) do the best and embrace it; and that is raising your child with so much love. You need to know that your child greatly appreciates all the effort that you put in everything you do for them. In the eyes of your child, everything that you do, perfect or not, is done with love. And for them, that is enough. And that is what makes you the best in their eyes.
Mom Lesson #3: You Will Wing It
Just like any first time mom, I don’t know anything about babies, taking care of them, let alone raising kids. When we were expecting our first baby, I was so scared because I didn’t know how to be a mom. I’ve always doubted my capabilities to take care of someone other than myself because I’ve never done that before.
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To prepare myself for my daughter’s arrival, I read every article and every book I could about what to expect the first year, or how to have the happiest baby on the block, and other things. I’ve had countless conversations with my mom and friends about motherhood and everything that comes with it. But to be honest, when I gave birth to my daughter 4 years ago, I didn’t know what to do. I was lost! It’s as if all the books and articles I read, and all the conversations I had, didn’t happen. It felt like I didn’t prepare for her arrival. All I knew was that I have to protect her from that moment on.
And then shortly after my daughter was born, I found out we were expecting another baby. I was still adjusting to my new role as a mom and slowly trying to keep myself from drowning from all the responsibilities. And there I was, about to be have a second baby. I got scared again! I wasn’t sure if I’ll be able to love my second born as much as I love my daughter; AGAIN, I doubted my capability. But this time, it’s about taking care of 2 babies under 2 years old. Much worse, I was worried how in the world are we going to afford daycare for 2 kids.
But you know what? Caring for my kids came naturally to me. It’s as if someone was whispering what I should and should not do. Sure, I’ve made some mistakes and we’ve faced a lot of challenges as a family, but for the past 4 years, I’ve been winging it. That’s not to say that you should not prepare for the arrival of your precious little one. Prepare as much as you can and don’t be scared. Whatever happens and whatever it is you’re struggling with, just keep this mom lesson in mind all the time: Trust in yourself and that the love you have for your little one will help you wing it! And always remember that if He brings you to it, He will bring you through it!
In case you’re wondering, I do love my son as much as I love my daughter. I realized I am capable of loving 2 different children in the same overflowing way. And with some juggling and guidance from God, somehow, we were able to raise 2 happy, sweet, and loving kids; and also afford paying daycare for 2 kids. We winged it!
Mom Lesson #4: It’s Okay To Get Yourself Something Nice
Before having kids, I have tons of extra money to spoil myself with anytime I want. But after having kids, I stopped getting myself anything because I would always feel guilty. With all the expenses that came with raising kids, including the high cost of daycare, and the fact that you need to get them new clothes every 3 months during their first year of life, it’s understandable to feel overwhelmed with all those. Good thing I was able to figure out a way to make my daughter’s clothes last longer (2 years).
I would always feel bad whenever I see something I want to get for myself. I couldn’t count the times I decided not to get something I need because I felt like the money spent on that would be better off saved for the kids just in case they’ll need something.
For the longest time, I’ve used this blog as an excuse to get myself something. I would always convince myself that I need it because I will be using it for the blog. But then one day, it’s as if someone slapped me in the face with this mom lesson. And that’s when I started seeing things differently. With all the hard work I’ve done, the bad days I’ve had, and all those times my patience reached its limit, I deserve to get myself whatever it is I want to get.
So moms, it’s okay to get yourself something nice from to time. You should never feel bad or feel guilty about it. In fact, you absolutely deserve it. Consider it as a reward for all your hard work.
I hope that these 4 important mom lessons I learned after being a mom for 4 years would help you navigate motherhood with ease and confidence. I am absolutely not a motherhood expert and I certainly recognize the fact that I have so much to learn. But being a mom, just like life, is all about that. You try what you think is best for your family, and if it didn’t work out for the best, you move on, learn from it and improve the next time.
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What did you think of this post? What do you think is the most important mom lesson that you have learned after becoming a mom? Let me know in the comments. You know I always love to hear from you.