(Note: I’ve responded to the comments on the I am mommy post (thanks for all the feedback, in comments, etc!). I’ve decided that Sarah (among others) is right in saying I should read the entire book. I’ve got 30 pages to go, and will be posting an update soon.)
As for Mother’s Day, I’ve been wanting to post excerpts from this excellent talk on my fridge. I guess my blog is a good first step.
From M. Russell Ballard, Daughters of God.
I love how he describes his first experience of sitting alone (wife singing in the choir) with his six kids at church. The frustrations of church with children aren’t original, but it’s still music to my ears:
. . . I found myself sitting alone with our six children. I have never been so busy in my whole life. I had the hand puppets going on both hands, and that wasn’t working too well. The Cheerios got away from me, and that was embarrassing. The coloring books didn’t seem to entertain as well as they should.
As I struggled with the children through the meeting, I looked up at Barbara, and she was watching me and smiling. I learned for myself to more fully appreciate what all of you dear mothers do so well and so faithfully!
He then discusses what mothers can do to “reduce the pressure and enjoy your family more.” There are some excellent points in there (he even quotes Anna Quindlen). But Mother’s Day is (or should be!) all about what others can do for mom. So:
First, show extra appreciation and give more validation for what your wife does every day. Notice things and say thank you—often. Schedule some evenings together, just the two of you.
Second, have a regular time to talk with your wife about each child’s needs and what you can do to help.
Third, give your wife a “day away” now and then. Just take over the household and give your wife a break from her daily responsibilities. Taking over for a while will greatly enhance your appreciation of what your wife does. You may do a lot of lifting, twisting, and bending!
Fourth, come home from work and take an active role with your family. Don’t put work, friends, or sports ahead of listening to, playing with, and teaching your children.
The third question: What can children, even young children, do?
Now, you children, please listen to me because there are some simple things you can do to help your mother.
You can pick up your toys when you are finished playing with them, and when you get a little older, you can make your bed, help with the dishes, and do other chores—without being asked.
You can say thank you more often when you finish a nice meal, when a story is read to you at bedtime, or when clean clothes are put in your drawers.
Most of all, you can put your arms around your mother often and tell her you love her.