Two Truths for Mom

On March 22, I have the distinct honor of spending some time with the women at Project Mom at their Abilene event. So in the spirit of this upcoming event, I’m going to reflect for a moment on moms and how our world wouldn’t—actually, couldn’t—run right without them.

My whole life, I’ve benefited from the generous love, encouragement, and nurturing that only a mom can provide. My paternal grandmother is the rock of our family, and her steadfast and selfless support will leave a legacy for generations to come. My mother demonstrated extraordinary commitment to her sons, despite unimaginable consequences. I married a woman who has taught me more about unconditional love than I ever knew possible. And over the past 15 years, I’ve had the privilege to partner daily with moms of all different backgrounds, ages, and life stages—each of whom is doing their very best to raise great kids.

What have I learned from these women? I’ve learned how to become a better man. And I’ve also found two things I wish every mom could step back and see.

  1. Moms get “dumped on” by their kids. I firmly believe moms are the most underappreciated, underpaid, and undervalued people in a society that would crumble without them. So it makes sense that they would find solace in the special relationship with their kids … an airtight bond replete with special rewards. But while this is true, it’s also a fact that moms can be the unmerited objects of their children’s scorn. Why? Because you are a safe place full of trusted, absolute love. I talk to so many moms who say everyone has such nice things to say about their kids, but that they don’t get to see those nice things themselves. Dad is “Mr. Fun,” and Mom is a dumping ground for hurt feelings and raw emotion. But moms, BE ENCOURAGED, this phenomenon is precisely why you are a good mom. You are safe, trusted, and needed more than the rest of us. And it should make you feel better to know that this is a season in life that will pass.
  2. Don’t do this alone. You’ve heard it said, “Motherhood is not for the faint of heart.” Can I be completely transparent with you for a minute? As a dad, I oftentimes don’t have the first clue how to parent my kids! But you know who does? Moms, who have been right where you are. The best moms tell me they’ve benefited from relationships with women who have older kids and know exactly what they are experiencing as a mom. For some, this is their mother. For others, it’s a relationship they’ve sought out. But the truth is that all moms (and dads) get stressed out by circumstances with their kids, and it’s almost always something that someone has successfully navigated before.

I admire moms for what they’ve meant to me in my life more than almost anything in the world. Rudyard Kipling once wrote, “God could not be everywhere, so he made mothers.”

Well said.

Until next time,

Jeff

About Jeffrey D. Potts, Ed.D.

Raised on a ranch in the Texas Hill Country, Jeff Potts, Ed.D., grew up learning the importance of hard work and family values. A graduate of Baylor University, he has master’s degrees from two universities and earned his Ed.D. in teaching and learning from a fourth institution. Potts launched his pedagogical career in the 1990s, working full-time with students and parents. READ MORE→