A Mother's Promise
I have spent many years thinking about the type of mother I want to be and when I became pregnant, I became more focused on what I would want to teach my child. Recently, I accepted a challenge to make a #MothersPromise to Winter. To collect the thoughts I have had throughout my time on this earth as a woman and now mother, I wrote the following letter in her baby book. I never want to lose sight of this promise I made to her, so I also printed it out and put a copy in the desk drawer at my work. I read it from time to time so that I won't lose focus of the steps outlined in the following letter to keep my promise.
I have been so blessed to have found long standing relationships with others who embrace me, love me and inspire me on a daily basis. I want this for you too, sweet one. So, I made a promise on the day before you were born that I would vow to teach you empathy, kindness and understanding of others without having to give too much of yourself. I hope that by teaching you these things you will experience true friendship and amity.
I go back and forth with how deeply I want you to feel. I say that because I have been called an "emotional sponge", one who absorbs others' feelings and energy. It is very much a part of who I am. Yet while it has given me the ability to connect to other humans on a deeper level, it has also taken so much out of me. I used to give and give and give until I had nothing left. This was a dangerous way of living, one that brought me a lot of anxiety and sadness. I continue to have to fight hard to reserve some of my energy and love for myself because I have found that I am no good to anyone when I give it all away.
Your father on the other hand has a more logical mind, one that assesses risk, vulnerability and potential gains. It takes him a while to trust others, but once he does, he is the most loyal, sensitive and faithful friend that I know.
I know that I have no control over your emotional disposition, for that has already been decided for you since before I knew you were even growing in my belly. However, I can model for you how to be an active listener, recognize emotions and feelings of others, and teach you how to express what you feel effectively. I am not perfect at any of these things but I will try my best to live by example.
I want you to learn "how to walk in someone else’s shoes" from a young age. That is why I promise that your father and I will travel with you to different countries, exposing you to various cultures and lifestyles. There is so much space in this world for everyone; yet, our society continues to spread hatred, racism and turns a blind eye at disproportional success. I don't want this cycle to continue with you. I want you to embrace the way that other people live, see their strengths and develop your own views about the world. I want you to feel that one person's kindness can make a difference because I have seen first hand that it truly can.
People say that that the way you already observe others with such focus and intent is something special. I couldn't agree more. I watch you watch the world and I can already see how curious you are. I want to feed that curiosity, ignite your passions and fuel your confidence in yourself and others. I want you to love yourself fully so that you can love everyone else too. I will spend my whole life trying to do these things. I promise you, I will never stop believing in you or your capability to spread kindness to those who are ever so privileged to meet you.
All of my love,
We have been using Pampers Premium Care at our household lately because of how delicate they are on Winter's skin. We chose to partner with @pampers and @walmart because we believe in these top tier, high quality diapers. They are hypoallergenic and have a wetness indicator that informs us when our little bean needs a new one. Alsoooooooo, they have passed the test of nighttime wear, with their breathable design and extra absorb channels. High five to no leaking!! They are now available at Walmart and Walmart.com.
Thank you to Acorn Influence for sponsoring this post. A special thank you to Pampers and Walmart for the kind gift card provided to our family to purchase Pampers Premium Diapers in support of a #MothersPromise. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Photography by Brittany Renee'