So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

 

I was frantically searching for my keys. Naturally, I was already five minutes late and the kids were about to take their shoes and coats off in the delay time between ready to go and get in the car. Finally, my oldest opened the front door and I saw them hanging from the lock.

The image of the keys dangling not only brought relief, but a realization: I was my mother.

It sounds crazy that a situation like that brought on this awareness, but I cannot count the number of times I was the kid who opened the door to reveal the missing keys for my mom.

It happens to all of us, and often at strange times. Maybe it is the phrase that just spilled out of your mouth, maybe it is the way you fold your laundry or the moment you look at an old photo of her and think it is a mirror.

We are our mothers . . . at least part of them.

Perhaps it’s just my perception, but hearing the expression “You are just like your mother” has never seemed like a strong compliment—even though my mother is amazing. My fierce independence and pride caused me want to be my own person and parent my own way.

I subconsciously focused on recreating my own wheel of successful parenting through education and preparedness. I spent countless hours in classrooms learning about child development and psychology. I listened to podcasts, attended courses at churches, read books, observed and discussed at length with educators, child care workers and other parents about different styles, research and opinions.

Through all this study, I have finally come to the conclusion the successful philosophies and practices are just fancy vocabulary for what my mom did.

Without the degrees, without extra money and without Pinterest . . . she rocked it, and I am in awe.

She organized incredible activities for my siblings and me. She surrounded us with books from the library, limited our TV time and sent us outside to explore nature and report back. She remained consistent in her messages to “be a peacemaker”, “find ways to be creative when you are bored”, “find good in everyone”, and “always work hard but do not over commit”.

Although she surrounded herself with resources and encouraging individuals, she did not try to complicate the parenting process. I now realize her methods of instructing us, praising us, and enriching our learning was not because she was schooled so well in research based methods, it was because she was training under the greatest psychologist, the highest educator and the parent of everyone. She was a student of the word and committed to prayer. These things, above all else, equipped her with wisdom, love, a sacrificial attitude and the knowledge that in spite of whatever mistakes she made, God was in control of her kids’ lives.

I do not regret any of my training, and I will not stop learning and challenging myself in this journey of parenthood, however, if I am lucky enough to hear someone tell me, “You are just like your mother,” I will take it as an extreme compliment, because perhaps they see me radiating the same education and preparedness she had from the source of all love and wisdom.

Allison Struber

Allison Struber is a military spouse and mother of three. Inspired by her kid’s energy and her husband’s dry humor, she spends her days teaching character development in schools, volunteering and trying to figure out a ways to bottle up the sweet moments in life. Find her at fb.me/STEMwritings.  

Being the Mother of an Athlete Means Learning to Let Go

In: Motherhood, Sports
mom watching sports game

This is my post. Has been for years. I’ve held this spot sacred, watching you play for so long. Yet as you grow older, I find myself mourning the day I‘ll finally have to give it up. I’ve worn a path here, pacing back and forth with worry. I’ve packed the earth here, jumping up and down with excitement. I’ve found friends here, locking arms so tight that they’ve become bonded like family. I’ve made room in my heart for teammates here, cheering as if they were my own children. I’ve learned to respect, to love, and to offer grace here,...

Keep Reading

My Little Girl Has Big, Brave Dreams

In: Kids, Motherhood
School paper with little girl's handwriting, color photo

My 6-year-old daughter wants to be a soldier.   When we heard from the ultrasound tech that we were having another girl, that was not exactly the career path that popped into our heads.   There’s something absolutely terrifying knowing your child wants to do something big like this. I’m sure I’d be petrified if I had a son with the same ambition, but there’s something extra scary about it being your little girl. There’s something weighty about raising a daughter who wants to be a soldier. But honestly, it’s not a surprise at all. RELATED: God Has Filled Your...

Keep Reading

Thanks For Leading by Example, Mom

In: Grown Children, Motherhood
Adult woman and mother smiling, color photo

Dear Mom,  Thinking back on my life as a child, young adult, and now a middle-aged mother myself, I am indebted to you for the many life lessons you have taught me—some directly, mostly leading by precious example.  If I have any bones to pick with you, it could be that you made it all look so easy. So very, very easy! Marriage, motherhood, working outside the home, relationships with in-laws, relationships with co-workers, relationships with church friends, and just relationships in general. I hardly ever saw you cry. The few times I did see you cry stand out to...

Keep Reading

Dear Introverted Mom, Take that Break

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman outside with book and food

I am alone, in a hotel room, 20 minutes from home, lying back in the crisp bed, feet propped up on billowing white pillows. A good book is in my hand. The large window beside me overlooks the Mississippi River as the sun slowly sets and people unwind for a southern Louisiana evening in downtown Baton Rouge. I’ll probably order room service for dinner. I spent the afternoon at the coffee shop across the street, sipping on a deliciously caffeinated beverage carefully made to my liking. I ate a delicate snack filled with fruits, fancy lettuce, and expensive cheese while...

Keep Reading

As an Anxious Mom, I Remind Myself You Were God’s Child First

In: Faith, Motherhood
Little boy sleeping

I remember bringing that squishy baby home from the hospital. His 9-pound birth weight didn’t label him as scrawny by any means, but he was so small to us. I cringed the first time I laid him in the bassinet beside my bed. I wouldn’t be able to keep an eye on him all night long like the nurses in the hospital nursery. I couldn’t make sure he was breathing every second of my coveted slumber. To calm my worries, we turned on our bathroom light and left the door wide open. The extra light wouldn’t disturb our angel from...

Keep Reading

Home is Holy Ground

In: Faith, Motherhood
Kids and mom at home

Some days, I wake up and walk around my house feeling my chest rise looking at the chaotic mess I didn’t get done the day before.  Trampling over toys, incomplete laundry, and dishes that seem to load up by the end of the day. I pause, I stare, and I wonder which of the objects in each room I should tackle first. I take a deep breath and notice my heart and my mind are overwhelmed with a running checklist. Why can’t everything just get done all at one time? You can talk to a dozen mothers and I am...

Keep Reading

I Want My Kids To Know God’s Always There

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman holding cross in the palm of her hand, color photo

A few months ago, my friend lost his dad. And it impacted our community profoundly. Because he loved SO BIG. Everywhere he went, he couldn’t help but talk to and engage with people—sharing a joke to make them smile or offering a compliment to build them up. He was a connector. And in all the connecting he did, he was quick to remind everyone he encountered that our hearts are ever connected to a God who loves us. It had become his thing to pass out little wooden crosses to those he happily chatted up as he went about each...

Keep Reading

As My Children Grow, I Miss It All—Even the Sick Days

In: Kids, Motherhood
Toddler on mom's shoulder

I whisk my daughter through the doors of urgent care and cradle her head as I stand behind three other mamas clinging to their babies. We’re each rocking in different ways but moving nonetheless. The silent, comforting rhythm of motherhood. I see sad, sick eyes from the babies with their heads nestled into the necks of their mama. I’m tired from the sleepless night, and I shift from foot to foot. There is hushing and humming and back-patting. A pacifier drops to the floor. All of a sudden my daughter feels heavy. A vague sinking feeling comes over me, like...

Keep Reading

Life with Autism Is Full of Ticking Time Bombs

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother, father, teen daughter, color photo

Many of us who live with autism are familiar with the comings and goings of the ticking time bomb—one that disappears for periods of time, so much so that we might forget about it. Then, suddenly, this bomb drops at our doorstep in the form of a returning or new obstacle, so intense that it causes us to pause our lives, alter our plans, maybe even change our current paths. For our family, the new challenge has been sudden, piercing, sporadic screams. Not constant, not even often, thankfully, but jolting nonetheless. So here we were, in the midst of our...

Keep Reading

In Motherhood, Grace Makes up the Difference

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother holding young child

Today, I have been the mean mom, the tired mom, the overwhelmed mom, the anxious mom, the impatient mom, and the want to turn in my mom card mom. Mostly, I’ve felt like the I have no clue what I’m doing mom. I have raised my voice 47 times, told children to “suck it up, buttercup” 36 times, and have intervened in approximately 83 sibling disagreements. I have rolled my eyes 59 times, sighed 148 times, and visibly showed other signs of impatience, well, way too many times. RELATED: I’m a Good Mom, You Just Caught Me in a Bad...

Keep Reading

 5 Secrets to Connect with Your Kids

FREE EMAIL BONUS

Proven techniques to build REAL connections