What I didn’t expect was how the book would change my perspective towards other mothers.
I have always tried to be polite when I see another mother out in public struggling, but the book reminded me that we are all in this together. Whether our kids are 8 days or 8 years old, we need more than polite. We need real!
My perspective of understanding other moms (which I thought was fine) has shifted to a perspective of encouraging other moms. The last week I have seen tired moms, moms crawling under chairs to retrieve toys at the doctors office, moms negotiating with 2 year old tantrums, moms rushing into the coffee shop for a quick snack for their kiddos, a mother diagnosed with breast cancer a month after the disease took her own mother, and even a great grandmother striving to create a legacy.
Mothering never ends, mothers are everywhere. I didn’t realize how many mothers are out there, how ragged they run, and how much difference small gestures can make coming from one mother to another.
~Amazon review of Surprised by Motherhood: Everything I Never Expected about Being a Mom
11 Things you can DO to Actively Encourage another mother:
- Grab that door she’s trying to wrestle open while juggling a baby carrier or a stroller.
- Pick up the pacifier/bottle/blankie/toy that her kid just threw on the floor and that she’s impossibly trying to bend over to pick up while holding a baby or a pregnant belly.
- Let her and the potty training toddler cut in front of you in the line for the restroom.
- Wave back at her wildly waving kid hanging out of the grocery cart trying to get your attention.
- Offer her a stack of napkins when someone inevitably spills something at the table next to you.
- Smile big and say out loud that she’s doing great when one of her kids is having a lay-down-on-the-floor-temper-tantrum.
- Help her load her groceries into the car.
- Tell her loud enough for the kids to hear what handsome well behaved sons she has.
- Comment within earshot what helpful daughters she has.
- Laugh and help her restock the shelf that just got demolished by her toddler.
- Admit often and out loud how hard this motherhood gig was for you too and that no one has mothering figured out. That it’s a surprise all over again every new day, age and stage.
And if you haven’t yet, give her a copy of Surprised by Motherhood: Everything I Never Expected about Being a Mom because every mom needs at least one book on motherhood that’s not a “How-To” book.
But instead is just a “Me too” story.
Because we’re all in this together, no matter what age or stage our kids are in. And imagine what we could do if we were actively looking for moms to encourage today!