What Legacy will you leave as a Mum?

On Thursday, I attended the service of songs or wake keeping for my cousin, Sola, (still can’t believe it). One of his closest friends read a tribute and talked about the legacy he left to his daughter. Although he spoke about a lot of things, the word ‘legacy’ has reverberated through my being since Thursday. What legacy am I leaving for my children?

When Sola’s daughter came up and read her tribute, I was struck by two things. Firstly, what an eloquent young woman – her parents must have been so proud of her. Secondly, how present her father was in her life.  Over the next few minutes she went on to describe explicitly what it means to be present as a parent from a child’s perspective.

Sola poured his life into his daughter and her well-being what his utmost concern. Whilst he might not have had much, he had a lot of love and he lavished it on her. I realised as she spoke, that on this dusty road we call life, he focused on the principle thing – love.

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Mother’s day can mean a myriad of things to many of us. A day to be cherished; a reminder that we are taken for granted perhaps; a reiteration of the fact that you are both mother and father to your child; a reminder that the child you long for is still not yours; maybe sadness over the loss of your own mum – it means so many different things to all people.

In the midst of all the chocolates, flowers, pampering and what nots you may or may not be doing, I’d like to take moment to focus on what it does mean to be a mother – to be a parent. These are the lessons my young cousin taught me on parenting from the view of a child.

  • Children are kind. They don’t always hold your faults against you.
  • They love unconditionally.
  • They appreciate when you spend time with them – quality time.
  • It is important to create memories. It doesn’t cost much to watch a movie on TV together or share your favourite songs with one another. Create unforgettable memories.
  • Encourage them all the time. Motivate them. Be their greatest cheerleader.
  • Though you are parent first and friend later, be the one that they want to come and share their burdens with.
  • When they find in you someone they can trust with their hearts, they share their lives with you and crown you ‘best friend’. This is not a title you bestow upon yourself.

I hope I haven’t rained on anyone’s parade today. It’s a reflective time for me and a stark reminder about what parenting is really about – at least for me anyway. However, I also find it encouraging that what children remember are the simple things, not the things – what they remember is you.

My cousin’s daughter, my young cousin, taught me what IS important about parenthood. In her words, “my dad wasn’t perfect but he was perfect to me”. It suddenly dawned on me that parenthood-slash-motherhood is an act of service not a trophy. It is also a privilege that I probably do take for granted if I am honest. And in those moments when we rush from pillar to post in a bid to do it all, all of the time, this is a wonderful reminder that we are enough.

Her time with her father was so so brief, it is really heartbreaking, but he left an indelible imprint on her heart that will last a lifetime. I wonder how my children will remember me? Have you ever thought about that? What legacy are you leaving your children?

Yours,

RWW

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I Made My Children Late For School

What a morning I have had. I’m battling a cold at the moment so I’ve been a bit tired. As a result, I shirked my evening routine and didn’t prepare for this morning. It was a what the heck moment. Very rash. Regretfully rash. Routines are there for a reason.

Of course I woke up late this morning and had to iron school shirts for the children and my work clothes. Thankfully, my husband woke them up and got them in the shower and all. I could hear the background noises but I still could not get out of bed. I was soooooooooo tired. Eventually I did, but it was inevitable, with so much to do we were going to be late. I get a slap on the wrist for making my children late this morning.*hangs head in shame*

We eventually made it to school with five minutes to spare. Although my children were probably the last to arrive in class, they were there before 9 a.m. That in itself was an accomplishment, all things considered. As I ushered them up the stairs, we were greeted by different brightly coloured hats on a table. Psssssssssss. It felt like air was suddenly let out of my tummy, as if I had been punched in the gut. “Our Easter Parade hats”, my children wailed. Dropped shoulders, forlorn faces, dejected looks pointedly at me.

I have to say, they handled it quite well particularly as they had worked on them all weekend and the day before. We had been well organised. To be honest, they would have been well within their rights if they had thrown a tantrum but they just gave me those puppy dog eyes look. Come to think of it, that might have been reverse psychology. Well it worked. So I said “O.K., get into your classes. I’ll go back home and bring forth your hats. Wonder Woman to the rescue”. Not really but something to that effect. It’s all a blur now. Booo hooo hooo. *wailing and head on the steering wheel in despair*

I wish I felt like Wonder Woman but what could I do? It would have been so bad if they were the only ones at the Easter Parade without hats or even worse, wearing supplementary ones made by teachers. Thankfully, we live only fifteen minutes away from school; a quick text to my line manger then I zoomed off home. Bless God, there was no traffic. I got the hats and zoomed back to the school. As I drove towards the school, a ‘Road Ahead Closed’ sign had been erected. Perfect! I reversed and went through another road and that had a ‘Road Closed’ sign. I deliberately ignored it but when I got to the adjoining road, a maintenance guy got out of his truck and said I could not pass through. Close to hysteria, I said “the other road was closed so I came through here”. He said, “the sign said Road AHEAD closed”, with emphasis on ‘ahead’. I looked at him blankly, like and the difference IS??????? With emphasis on the ‘is’. Road ahead closed and road closed. All I see is closed. Did anyone else know there was difference? Someone help me as I’m obviously having a meltdown. So I had to reverse, yet again, and go through the road-ahead-closed route *rolls eyes* and finally got to the school.

Everyone was at assembly so I just placed the hats where I thought my children would easily find them not necessarily where they should have been. I just pray after all that, they got them. My day can only get better, right?

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