(Inside: Brave mom, parenting persuades us to be braver today than we were yesterday. Motherhood grows courage in spectacular ways. Read on…)
Here’s my most recent Huffington Post article. It still seems surreal that I get to publish over there. Crazy mad dream come true. What is your dream? What keeps you up at night as you think: Maybe I COULD do this? What has God placed on your heart to try? I say go for it. Even if it’s out-of-the-box for you. We get one life, one chance. Maybe it won’t work out, but then again…maybe it will. (And thanks for reading a piece of my dream.♡)
I put the article in full below but would love it if you would head over to the Huffington Post and share it from there.
18 Hours Later and I Felt Braver (For Moms)
I did something I never thought I could do this summer: I drove 18 hours alone with my three kids on a marathon road trip.
Not straight – that’s madness. Over three days, I drove 9 hours, 5.5 hours, and then 3.5 hours.
But still. Eighteen hours.
I feel like John Glenn.
Voyaging beyond an hour from home with my boys is NOT MY THING. The thought gives me insomnia. But I desperately wanted my children to see out-of-state people I love, especially their great-grandma. My husband started the trip with us but needed to fly home to work. So I took the wheel alone and pressed on. I would never have done this before kids, but motherhood trumped fear.
Parenting does that. It can make us narcoleptic-tired, paper-thin stretched, and worried like we majored in it, but out of the hard parts comes this crazy new kind of strength.
From day one, we are forced out of our comfort zone. At first, we can’t even believe someone would trust us with this little human being. Then it seems miraculous that in our sleep-deprived state, we’ve somehow kept our baby fed, rested, and clean. We get our kids safely through the toddler years despite the things they insist on doing, like licking spilled chocolate milk off of McDonald’s floor. (True story. That was also the day my first grey hair came in.)
We become master researchers: illness, milestones, parenting tips, schools. Our strength becomes sub-human; when our children decide to koala-bear us for the entire length of the mall and then some, we carry them. When our eight-year-old begs to be thrown across the pool because, “Please mom, it’d be so fun!,” we find ourselves tossing a gleeful kid like we actually followed through with our morning workout. We make hard decisions: “Should I step into this middle school drama or let them figure it out on their own?” or “How do I motivate my teenager to get better grades in high school?”
In juggling work, family and household, we become bolder, we speak up. And somewhere in it all, we find our inner Mama Bear.
And she is empowering. She nudges us to do things like drive alone with kids into galaxies beyond…
…or 18 hours across America…whatever, same diff.
All I know is after the road trip, I feel like I can do more than I could before.
Not that I want to drive alone again. (I don’t. And I don’t recommend it to you either.) But I could do it if I had to.
Parenting persuades us to be braver today than we were yesterday.
And that feels good.
Brave Mom, Join this community of moms raising big kids…
Your brain bounces between your day at work, what time you need to get each kid to practice, your teen’s missing school assignments, that you haven’t called your mom lately, the load of the laundry to be switched, “What’s for dinner?” and “Why are 3 of my brain-tabs frozen?”
You are raising big kids – the unique parenting phase where everything gets easier…and harder.
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Read more about raising big kids…
My two oldest sons are in high school now, and I’m still in a coma because of it. Even though I’ve taught high school for over two decades, I’m confused as to how I’m actually old enough to be a parent of a high schooler.
Teaching high schoolers has always been a passion of mine, but now parenting them is as well. I could research, write, and talk about this topic until eternity. I hope you are encouraged by some of my articles.
WHEN TO PUSH AND WHEN TO PULL BACK
Parents, When You Don’t Know, Go With Your Gut
HELPING YOUR STRUGGLING TEEN
You Can’t Fix Your Struggling Teens’ Problems, But You Can Do This One Powerful Thing
Cheryl is a mom of 3 boys, wife, speaker, high school teacher, and author of Empowered Moms & Kids. She has a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and is passionate about learning and teaching. On www.empoweredmomsandkids.com you’ll find inspiration and encouragement for moms raising tweens and/or teens. Read more in the “about” section of this page.