Note from Kat: Today’s post is from my friend, and monthly contributor, Liz Griffin. As many of you know, I recently started a new blog called, HowTheyBlog.com, and it’s gotten off to an incredible start. I’m been amazed at the wisdom each blogger has shared and the insight all the readers seem to be getting from each interview.
Liz’ post today is kind of like spin off of How They Blog…(HowTheyMom.com??) She is introducing us to and interviewing her incredible mom (who mothered Liz and her brother in Siberia for several years!!). Don’t miss a nugget of this wisdom, my friends. There is so very much to be learned from those who are on the other side of this motherhood journey of ours.
Welcome to May ladies! I must say, May is one of my favorite months. The school year is winding down, I have my wedding anniversary ( 10 yrs whoo! ) and we get to celebrate Mother’s Day. Now, we all know that moms need lots of encouragement and other mom’s to learn from. So, today I am giving you a chance to learn from one of the best… my very own mom!
As Kat would say, she is kind of a big deal. I seriously couldn’t honor my mom enough. I can’t imagine growing up under a better woman and I call her with all my mommy questions. She agreed to let me interview her & I’m sure you will see what a gem she is!
Without further ado, I’d like to introduce you to Kathy Mulkey.
Q: What does “motherhood“ mean to you?
You mean besides watching my heart walk around outside my body? Motherhood means I’ve been entrusted with a precious gift. I’ve been given more than a cute child. I have the responsibility of shaping a life, an eternal being. Jobs, relationships, etc. will pass away but this child for eternity. Along the way there will be laughter & tears, frustration & satisfaction, doubts & reassurances. But in the end, it is oh, so worth it!
Q: When we were young, what was the biggest challenge for you?
I tried to do it all. I wanted to have the perfect house, perfect meals, perfect children. I almost went perfectly insane. You have to cut yourself some slack. I had to choose. So I chose to let the “perfect” house go. (and there were actually days my husband wouldn’t walk into the kitchen barefooted) Once I took the pressure off myself I was able to actually enjoy my children more.
“If you really want what’s best for your children you’ll home school.” Yeah. That statement was accompanied with a bucketful of condemnation. Now, don’t misunderstand me. There is nothing wrong with homeschooling! It was the suggestion that there is only one right way to raise kids.
The thing is, public school…private school…home school…there are no guarantees. My husband and I prayed each year about what we should do and always felt we should have our kids in the excellent public school in our neighborhood.
Friends and family will always give advice. But you know your children better than anyone. Always ask for God’s guidance. Then do what you feel is best for your children.Q: What was the best advice you were given?
Take time to do something for yourself every day. Moms get so overwhelmed trying to juggle work, children, housekeeping, shopping, laundry, etc. We often take care of everyone but ourselves. Do something for yourself. It doesn’t have to be a major thing. For me it was reading the newspaper every day. For you it may be soaking in a bubble bath or painting your nails. Allow yourself a bit of “me” time. It can work wonders and keep you sane!
Q: You and dad have an amazing marriage. What tips do you have about investing in your marriage while juggling kids?
There’s a story about the mother who watched her fourth child drive off to college. She looked at her husband, sighed, and said, “You’re all I have now.” To which he replied, “I’m all you had to begin with.”
Raising children is obviously time-consuming and too often the husband and wife grow apart. Make time for each other even if it’s just a coffee date. Talk about your dreams, fears, disappointments, and goals. Remember what first attracted you to each other and keep that attraction alive.
After over 36 years of marriage my husband and I still leave little notes for each other. Sometimes I write “I love you” on the mirror with lipstick. Sometimes he leaves a note on the door for me to see as I leave the house. Find little ways to express your love and appreciation. Not only does it keep your marriage strong, it models a healthy marriage relationship for your children.
Q: What is one piece of advice you would like to give moms?
When raising children, the days are long and the years are short. They WILL grow up. Also, keep in mind that while your husband comes home after work and tells you what he’s accomplished that day, you won’t see the fruit of your labor immediately. But by persistence you’re pouring into your child’s life and one day the child will blossom into the most amazing adult.
Let them know you are proud of them NOT because of what they’ve done, but because they are yours…period. Be their biggest cheerleader. Enjoy every day you have with them.
Relax and enjoy the season!
What have you learned from the mothers (your mom, grandma, mentors, friends) in your life? Click here to join the discussion!
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Elizabeth is a church planter, speaker, writer and naptime abolitionist. She lives in Texas with her husband & two little kids. Her other hobbies include wasting time on social media, trying to remember where she parked her car, and browsing Pinterest for DIY projects she will never actually make. You can visit her over at Lark & Bloom or on twitter @larkandbloom.