A LONG LIST OF THINGS I LEARNED FROM A MOM WHO IS “NEVER ENOUGH”
I went to bring my son to the museum last weekend and I had to get six adult passes and only one for the child. Talk about a village raising a child.
Remember the sex education topic I covered for Mommy Manual PH? The people we guested on the show were actually my very own mentors. By that I mean personal coaches or guides in life, especially regarding my spiritual walk and family life. When my producer was thinking of experts, I could not think of anyone else as I have personally benefitted from their wisdom as believers and as parents.
Now this episode also gave me a particular insight which actually has nothing to do with the topic. It started when my mother left a comment on my mentor’s Instagram post as they promoted the episode. I cannot find the exact post anymore but my mom said something like, “Thank you for teaching my daughter everything that I was not able to teach her myself.”
Of course I was touched to see my mom say that, but more than that I had a thought about what “it takes a village to raise a child” really means.
As parents, we want to be the ones to teach our kids everything. We want to do our best for them. We want to cover every thing as we desire to be the parents they exactly need. But the truth is that we are never enough. What we know, what we do, what we can – will simply never be enough.
Like my mother is an excellent mother, she is an amazing woman, but with everything else that I needed and continue to need in my life, one woman alone will not be able to fulfill all of it. And this is when I think “a village” figures, that sure and safe community which you can offer to your children as they grow into their own beings, filled with people you can trust to help you guide and guard them as their needs increase and your authority plummets. Parents need others. Not only to babysit, but to lend wisdom that escapes us.
So if you are a mom today and you feel quite inadequate in teaching your child everything I say: R E L A X. This is where community figures. This is where the church stands. This is where believing brothers and sisters in the Lord can sub and give your little ones (or even big ones, haha!) godly insight from above. And this is why it pays to be plugged in a quality community – as it benefits not only yourself, but also the next generation!
Moms and Dads, make this an investment. And also, make yourself a willing investment for others. Be available to be the village of other parents, as well. People your friends’ kids can learn from, run to, grow with. Let’s help each other so that we can be confident enough to say that “We are not enough, but I have my community and I’ve got God.”
My mom has never been enough but look at this long list of things I would have otherwise not learned apart from her!
- Selflessness – My mom will let all six of us, including apos, eat, rest, make the first pick, before herself. I am nowhere near her ability to put others before oneself, but whatever little I have right now comes from her.
- Quality Travels – My mom has six kids but makes sure she is able to bring us all, together with apos, on affordable travels. She made sure we made memories by the beach, on a mountain and by sharing one big caldero of adobo or afritada. She always found a way even it was expensive to bring all of us together!
- Baby Love and Motherhood/Family Life in General – She loved babies and was never scared to hold any of them. I grew up seeing this and inheriting her very strong motherly nature. She also knows how care for a lot of people and an entire household and this kind of taught me to be an okay manager of our home.
- Interior Decorating — I leave for school and come back with our ref in a totally different part of the house. Growing up my mom fixed up our house a lot, made sure Christmas felt and looked and smelled like the holidays for the fam. This is also why I am a sucker for interior styling!
- Hard Work – My mom is up early and sleeps early. She is out before everyone wakes up, to the market, mall, what have you, just because she wants to get things done. Not once in my entire life have I seen her slack off and become lazy.
- Entrepreneurial Spirit – My mom can make anything grow and find a way of profiting from it. I think she is someone who will possibly never grow hungry! She always has a way of producing things.
- Strength – I’ve never known women to be weak because my very first example of a woman is highly capable and strong. I was never shy to say what I thought and always threw my opinions out on the open. Sometimes to my detriment, haha. Both my mom and I had to temper our tongue over time.
- Simplicity – My mom will be able to eat kape and pandesal for all the rest of her life. Guess who is like that? MOI. We can live with the simplest things, simplest food and simplest homes, and instead prefer a high quality for love and laughs!
- Investment – My mom knows how to save and she particularly introduced me to jewelry. I think I still have a long way to go when it comes to investment but I am glad that I have her to follow.
- Integrity – My mom once told me, “Dibale ng may masabi ka sa kanila, huwag lang na sila ang may masabi sayo.” (“Nevermind that you can say something about them, rather than they are able to say something against you.”) My mom has never had vices, has been a good girl, and is always true when dealing with people and I think that is why I am big on fairness. I have to be just at all times!
- Punctuality/Professionalism – Tell my mom our flight is at 6 in the morning and she’ll be ready by 12 midnight. Yup, I am trained to be overly punctual!