Yes, we all want that one selfie that would go viral like #momtwinandme but that’s not all there is to be a mother.

Being a mother is one experience we cannot relate to our children, one lesson that cannot be taught. I never knew that being a mother was so difficult until now. When I was younger, life was simpler – though I always taught the opposite. In my own way, I felt life had given me its best hit at the age of 10 when I had my first ‘red wedding’ as I sat in my Dad’s office. Dad was kind enough to pay me a little cash for working as a young clerk, so I wasn’t discouraged by the new change in my life. My first ‘red wedding’ was a scary experience, but that’s nothing compared to being a mother.

As a young girl, I thought about love between a man and woman and the prince charming that comes in his shining armour funny enough, I skipped childbearing and the part where I cater for them. With age comes responsibility – with kids come everything.

I find it intriguing how I have made funny faces, silly sounds, baseless excuses and a whole lot more, just to please or tease my kids. In essence, there is no better way to be a good mom, but there are simple guidelines that can help you pull through. To the best of my knowledge, I will endeavor to mention all I can.

Be a friend

Yes, we all want our kids to be close to us forever, but that is not the kind of friendship am talking about. In this aspect, we are going to focus on the importance of communication between a mother and child.

Don’t hesitate to talk on diverse issues/subjects. Gone are the days when mothers threatened their kids about life and sex. Our African mothers would say to their girl child “don’t touch any boy or you will get pregnant”. I remember what my stepmom told me at age 10 when I had my first ‘red wedding’ “don’t go near any boy because now you can bear children”. Now that I think of that statement, it sounds really funny.

Well, be a friend also involves taking many selfies with your kids even if it doesn’t go viral, it would be a memory to cherish.

Tell your kids the truth about life: When your child is old enough to understand, explain what sex, reproduction, love, family, business etc is all about.

At the age of 0-2, teach your children about their body parts, call it private part, vagina or penis. Do not try to sugarcoat the words by calling it bum-bum. Be a mother – be a friend.

Listen

While communicating with your child, always make an effort to listen. Listening would help you understand the heart of a child. Sometimes, just listen – you don’t always have to be the one doing the talking. Always listen to everything your child wants to tell you.

As mothers, we are quick to assume we know what our child is about to say, well yes if we have “mind reading powers….lol. Do well to be patient as it gives you a clearer picture of what your child is trying to convey.

Be Silly

Please get it right, be silly not be vulnerable. This implies spending quality time with your children. As a mother, it is difficult to catch up on everything but always make out time to play with your kids. Give them little tight hugs, tell them I love you while they are asleep and kiss or peck them forever.

You could also make their imaginary plays a blockbuster movie by taking major roles e.g Supergirl, Rapunzel, Superman etc., it sure will make their day.

With silliness comes Love.

Be firm

1 and 2 may influence your decisions when it comes to number 3 but do not mix-up fun and discipline. One thing that always comes to mind when I discipline my kids is “foolishness is tied to the heart of a boy”; this goes to show that kids are meant to be corrected. Be the firm parent when you have to be. I know most African mothers would relate to discipline, but do not mistake abuse for discipline. Some forms of discipline we African parents met out to our children are rather harmful. When disciplining your child, always apply one rule – never discipline a child when you are angry.

Commend your child

Well, there is no better way to say this – commend your child. Do not say, “you tried” rather say, “you did good, well done”.

Religion as a tool

This is an integral part of being a good mother. It is only natural that we teach our kids about the creator. Whatever your religion, inculcate the values of serving God in your kids. Every religion has a means of teaching children good values, so use it as a tool to mold your child.

 

In the next article: We would discuss a healthy vegetable that can help prevent cancer. This article would be published on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

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