About This Book
A mother's job is never done, but in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks to My Mom, she gets the praise she deserves! Children of all ages share their words of thanks in these 101 stories of love, learning, and gratitude to the woman they couldn't have done without! This new collection of stories will brighten any mother's day, and show her that the kids were paying attention after all.
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Five Reasons to Feel Good about Being a Mom
Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks to My Mom by Amy Newmark and Jo Dee Messina
Being a mother is both the hardest job in the world, and the most rewarding. Even the best mother sometimes wonders if she's really influencing her children, hoping her hard work is appreciated. Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks to My Mom is the answer, with 101 stories of love and gratitude for moms. Here are five tips and sage observations to motivate mothers of all ages, and to reassure them that their children really are listening.
1. You never stop having an influence on your kids. Maril Crabtree found herself stuck in a rut. She was having trouble finishing her thesis and she felt like giving up on her dreams. What she didn't realize was that she was working toward her mother's hopes and dreams, too. Always regretting how the Great Depression kept her from college, Maril's mother had only four words of advice for her reluctant daughter: "Finish it for me." Those four words reignited Maril's inner fire, and kept it fanned through all of her endeavors. When Maril decided to make a career change, her mother was her cheerleader. Letting anxiety get the better of her before her bar exam, she remembered her mother's words. "Whenever I faltered, whenever the old negative feelings threatened to take over, I heard Mom whisper 'Finish it for me.'Her words magically melted all the fears."
2. You and your children can take turns supporting each other. Diane Stark was in the hospital delivering her first child when she noticed something oddly sad about her mother. But Diane had other trials ahead of her, and as her newborn struggled for life her mother's unusual mood was forgotten. Then, just a few days later came the news: Her parents were divorcing. Now her mother was the one who needed mothering, so Diane stepped into that role. "After a lifetime of counting on Mom to be there for me, I had become the caretaker and she was more the child." Nevertheless, when Diane's own marriage was coming to an end, "She was there in ways that only a mother could be." No matter the situation, Diane and her mother found strength and support in each other. "One of us has stepped up when the other was hurting and in need."
3. What kids really want is your time and attention. She was a single mom with four kids working long hours, so you'd think that John Buentello's mother would have kept some of her precious free time to herself. In fact, it was quite the opposite. John's mom would ask her kids to relate the day's lessons and share with her their latest accomplishments. "She never seemed too tired to ask us questions and she was really interested in what was important to us, even though I know she must have been exhausted from work." Whether it was chatting while cooking dinner together or finding ways to attend school plays, no detail or event was ever too small for his mother to cherish. "No matter how much of a hurry she must have been in, she always treated what we had to share with her as if it were the most important thing in the world." John says, "It is a gift my mom gave to me for which I will forever be grateful."
4. Your children will eventually admit you were right. When Pam Carter got pregnant at sixteen, her mother took a firm stance; she was going to have to raise this child without her parents'help. "And true to her word, Mom was hands-off when it came to baby duties... She was a doting Grandma while I was Momma to my child." Getting through those first several months was a huge struggle, but Pam worked hard to raise her daughter and keep her home in order. After having her second child, Pam finally realized what a gift her mother had given her. "Her tough love forced me to take charge of my own life and to be a responsible mother. She knew what she was doing all along."
5. Your actions can both inspire and teach your kids. Elizabeth Greenhill and her brothers had been promised a rare treat — an afternoon of fun in their aunt's pool — and were shocked when they were told to pile back into the station wagon to take the one-hour drive back to the bank. The kids pleaded to stay behind and swim, because "this was an opportunity not to be missed." But it was. Their mother stood firm, and the reason why became clear when they stepped into the bank and up to the teller's window. "I saw my mother slide a one-hundred-dollar bill over the marble countertop to the teller. 'You gave me one hundred dollars too much,'" she said, and the teller sighed in relief. In that moment Elizabeth's mother not only saved a stranger from losing her job but also taught her children an unforgettable lesson.