In my “other life” when I am not doing the Happy Flower Day Project, I am an author/writer.
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR MIDDLE-AGE MOMS
Permission is granted to reproduce for any purpose provided credit is given as follows:
The Ten Commandments for Middle-Aged Moms was written by Patricia Gallagher, the creator of the Team of Angels pins and the author of fourteen books. Please share freely!
1. You are the best mother that you know how to be. Promise yourself you will never again second-guess any decisions that you made while raising your children. You already spent hours of your life thinking about what you said or did to the kids that you regret. You can’t go back in time for even a minute, so apologize to yourself, or to someone else, because whatever it is – it is still hurting you. Everything that you did was the very best that you knew how to do at the time. Now, that you are older and have matured in your personal growth, you have gained coping skills and parenting skills that will help with present and future healthier family communication and interaction. You learned hard-earned lessons through life experiences. Hopefully, your children have seen you overcome and evolve. You can now model behaviors that will help them to be parents who raise their children in a healthy environment.
2. Thou shalt not beat yourself up or ruminate over what you could have, should have or would have done in the past. We have all made mistakes related to money, relationships, employment, family issues, and unacceptable behavior. Carrying that guilt of bad feelings about yourself is stifling to your present lifestyle. Forgive yourself, hug yourself, bless yourself and pat yourself on the back for all that you did to love your children.
3. Remember to keep holy the memory of the good times. The birthday parties, the school functions, the neighborhood and family gatherings – and all of the things that you did to show your love to your child. The little notes that you wrote, the little acts of kindness that you showed every day, the special words of endearment and love nicknames and the ways that you taught your children to care about others. How you helped with homework assignments, checked in with the teachers when there was a problem, acted as a referee when there was a conflict with a sibling or friend, took them to the zoo, played games, read them stories, made cookies and treats, attended their sporting events and music lessons, and how you soothed hurt feelings and scraped knees.
4. Honor thy wonderful person that you are now – and that you always were. You weren’t perfect and nobody is perfect -even the other mothers who looked so perfect. They probably weren’t if you asked their kids.
5. Thou shalt not tell yourself that you were not good enough, successful enough, pretty enough, smart enough, resourceful enough, creative enough, worthy of love.
6. Thou shalt not criticize thyself when looking in the mirror and seeing a reflection that has aged – gracefully or not gracefully. It does not matter. You are a wonderful woman who loved with all of your heart, despite some very challenging circumstances – much of which you bore as burdens on your own.
7. Thou shalt not compare yourself to anyone. You shall appreciate the new beginnings in your life as a mother whose children have grown up and no longer live in the Mother Bird’s nest.
8. Thou shalt not wish to be like anyone else.
9. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s children, spouse, home, car, possessions, vacation home, or bank account balance. Doing so will only make you feel low in comparison.
10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s – anything at all. Being jealous or envious steals your peace and energy. The time that you spend wishing that things in your life were more like someone else’s life is never going to make you feel better. When that happens, force yourself to grab a pen and paper and start writing a gratitude list. You shall appreciate all of the goodness that you have shown to your children and all of the good that others have shown to your children.
You may have seen Patricia on Oprah, CNN, The CBS Early Show, The 700 Club, CNBC, Sally Jessy Raphael, and Maury Povich. Her work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Gannett and AP wire services, Family Circle, Woman’s World, Parents Magazine and others. She welcomes interviews, speaking engagements and consultations.
Patricia C. Gallagher BA, MBA
E mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cell: 267 939 0365