If you are a mom, you know that no one knows your children better than you do. You have the intimate knowledge of them to know just by looking at their eyes that they have strep throat or a sinus infection. You know from the moment they come out of their rooms in the morning whether they are going to have good days or bad days. You know by their stature when they walk in from school or away from a chat on the computer if they are dealing with friend issues, heartache or disappointment.
I have three beautiful Baby Hats, A,B, and C. They were precious baby girls that are now turning into amazing young women. Am am in awe everyday of who they are and what they are becoming. They will truly make a difference in the world in some way. I couldn't be more proud of them.
Being a woman I have always felt like I had an advantage raising girls. I know that many of the things that they will experience will be the same things that I experienced growing up. Heartbreaks, hormones, homework - I can relate. Friendships, fearing the future, feeling awkward at times - I've been there. Sadness, success, silliness of being a teenager - this mom has lived that too. I understand the intricacies and bonds surrounding growing up with sisters. I know the insecurities, the joys, the quirkiness and challenges of growing from a girl into a woman.
I know my babies intimately. I know their hearts.
However, as well as I know them, I know there is much that I don't know about them. They may not reveal every fear, every joy, every interest, or every concern to me. My desire in my fortyness is to know them even more. I want to know them more to help them navigate the roads that lie ahead of them in life. Even though I have traveled them, their own experiences change the terrain. In order to guide or even walk with them, I want to be familiar with the roadblocks, u-turns and forks that they may have to negotiate.
This year on my birthday, I am giving each of my daughters a gift. I am giving them a pair a canvas tennis shoes in my size and a pack of permanent markers. As a gift to me, I am going to ask them to put on these shoes, all the things that make them who they are - hopes, dreams, fears, disappointments, successes and failures. Whether they choose to simply write words or create pictures to represent, it doesn't matter. This is something for them to express who they are...so I can know them better.
When they are done with these shoes, I hope to be able to be a better mother to them. I hope to be able to understand their hearts even more. I hope to be able to have a deeper connection with them as I put the gifts on my own feet and walk a mile in their shoes.