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I’m THAT Mom

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You know, that Mom that takes her children sledding at midnight, under the stars, making the neighbors secretly jealous because they have to sleep to get up early for work and school.

 

I’m that Mom who loves to clean and decorate and enjoys giving my family a cozy, joyful place to call their nest. I express my creativity using my home as my canvas. I want home to be a place that my children love to be, where they feel safe, happy and inspired in.

 

I’m that Mom who always assumes positive intent from my children and sees them as fully capable people.

 

I’m that Mom who encourages my children to explore their own beliefs, even when they differ from my own.

 

I’m that Mom who enjoys the music my children love and turns up the volume as loudly as they want in the car. I am that Mom who loves bands like, Metallica and Slayer and still dives in mosh pits at their concerts.

 

I’m that Mom who will jump on a trampoline with my children, even though I can feel my body jiggle in places that I didn’t know I had flesh.

 

I’m that Mom who kisses the mirror and says, “I love you,” to myself while my children are watching. 

 

I’m that Mom who explores my own interests fully, with reckless abandon, inspiring my children, through my passion, to learn more about what I am into.

 

I’m that Mom who often times makes a different meal for everyone in the family because I trust that whatever they are craving is exactly what their bodies need, yet I don’t feel like a “short-order cook, a waitress or a slave.”
I feel like a nurturing Mother.

 

I’m that Mom who chooses to be my children’s voice if they are in a situation where they are uncomfortable, or unable to express their feelings or needs. 

 

I’m that Mom who sometimes pays for the coffee or a toll for the person in the car behind us, just for the joy of it because my children love when we practice random acts of kindness with strangers.

 

I’m that Mom who no longer has babies or toddlers who are physically dependent on me, but is grateful for the next phase of our lives together as a family. I am rediscovering who I am now that a decade of pregnancy, nursing and child-wearing is over.

 

I’m that Mom who’s learning how to paint and make pottery with the encouragement of my children and loving the passion for art and creativity that my kids are developing alongside me. I’m that mom who keeps her home fully stocked with paint, paper, clay, pastels, and every kind of craft supply imaginable, to fully facilitate our love for creativity.

 

I’m that Mom who plays Grand Theft Auto with my kids and looks up cheat codes to help them gain access into secret levels of a game that they love. I bring my kids to gaming and Steampunk conventions and dress up as a character that they created, because they want me to.

 

I’m that Mom who will throw towels in the dryer while my children are in the shower, then run them upstairs to surprise them with warm towels to wrap themselves with on cold, snowy nights.

 

I’m that Mom who talks openly and freely about love and sex and shares that intimacy is something each of them will learn about in their own time, in their own way and I will be there for them in any way that I can to answer questions and support them without judgement.

 

I’m that Mom who always says, “Yes,” when my daughters ask to play with my makeup and beauty products, even when it is my favorite, expensive body wash, because they are worth it to me. 

 

I’m that Mom who gets a tattoo that represents each of my children, where they each pick out a color of their choice to represent them on the tattoo. When other people see my tattoo, they proudly point to which part of the tattoo is, “them.”

 

I’m that Mom who will pull out my grandmothers fine china, as a surprise to serve their lunch on, showing them that everyday together as a family is a special occasion.

 

I’m that Mom who makes mistakes sometimes, but I am not afraid to apologize to my kids. I know in doing so, they will learn that making mistakes is part of learning and growing. They know I am perfectly imperfect. 

 

I’m exactly the Mom that I always wanted to be, despite others telling me it would never happen because I’d know better once I had my own children.

 

Yes. I’m THAT Mom.

Comments

  1. LOVE this, Dayna. Yes.

  2. Sounds like we should be friends!

  3. Yes! Me, too. And I love every moment of it! I am so glad to have discovered your site– a gift!

  4. Wow……awesome

  5. Dileepan says:

    Wow! Reads like a dream! Good on you, and your children!

  6. I love this! I especially love the end – that you are the mom you always wanted to be even though other people said “you’d know better.” You do know what’s better for you and your family! :)

  7. Sue Landsman says:

    I absolutely love this.

    What I wonder though, is how do you “fill your own cup” so you can be this mom? Could you do this if you we’re a single mom, or if you had a spouse who wasn’t home much, or not as supportive?

    I wonder, too, if we’re all just too hard on ourselves, and if we think that because we’re not this kind of mom “enough” of the time then we’re just not at all, or if we’re all so bogged down in fear and expectations that we can’t fly. I’m reading a writing book now that talks about using brain science to overcome write t’s resistance. Basically it talks about how create new habits to allow you to rise above the stressed “fight or flight” condition we often are in without realizing it. It’s amazing to think how much of this relates to parenting. Especially mainstream parenting; if your basic state is worry, doubt, and the stress of trying to control what you can’t, then how can you ever experience joy or do the “right” thing at any time for you or your kids?

    • Hi Sue, I look forward to reading your book! sounds like just what I need. I really enjoy the fact that Dayna says others told she would know better once she had kids. I have been a mom over 27 years! i have 4 wonderful children, 27,22,13,and 10.two boys,two girls.
      I would really enjoy learning from your book how to change habits, and feel more confident in daily life. I especially want this so my children will mirror my new confidence.
      I wanted to respond to your question about if you could do this as a single mom,or if you had a spouse who was not home much or not supportive . I lost the love of my life,my late husband, 11 yrs ago when he was on his way to deliver items to victims of 9/11,because he was from NY. The hospital sent him home with chest pain,saying it was indigestion. Minutes after calling us,and having the youngest sing to him his ABC’s(he just turned 2). Years later I married our close family friend who lived in our neighborhood,and who worked where i worked,and took my youngest to work with me.Therefore,he was very close to my children,and they enjoyed spending time with him when we went to the park etc..he was like a big kid. My husband trusted him,so I felt ok with my decision to marry him. I had no close family,and was afraid to date due to the horrors you hear about women marring with teen girls etc…Unfortunately, my new husband went from being my close wonderful friend,to a not very nice guy whose demons from his dad in childhood came out when we were married. Sorry for all the boring background details, it is important for a correct answer to your question.
      Yes, actually it is much easier to unschool or even homeschool when you have no support or even negative influences from your spouse. For example, no embarrassment when you are PFA president, yet your husband,and children’s father(my youngest daughter),and step father was never around at a school where almost all the parents and grandparents come often to have lunch with the kids etc..I have an auto immune disease that has caused me many complications since it appeared after 2 yrs into the marriage..(Many Dr.’s,after meeting my husband,tell me if I took my kids, and got away from the negativity,and unsupportive man,my disease might greatly slow down.Anyway, if I am having a bad pain day, I can still teach my children,and listen, and organize activities. I do not have to worry about begging my husband to attend an event, or help by dropping the kids off at school! Lastly, when one is alone or not supported emotionally, some teachers,unfortunately, look down on the mom which is not good for the kids who are straight A students with great behavior,and well respected at the school. My oldest at the elementary school actually overheard office staff blatantly lying about me and making fun that i could not afford a mani/pedi or face lift etc..like the other moms. Basically, yes it is very possible,and actually a positive thing compared to leaving your children with strangers who some have huge emotional and personal problems,and should NOT be teaching children! Please know that I am not bashing teachers!! Lots of them are awesome and give 110 percent.The teachers in Oklahoma,and Sandy Hook are true heroes and very caring people! However, one who acts negatively in the classroom can crush a child emotionally even if they are not the one being picked on day after day!! Lastly, school projects do not cause stress and fighting if they are on your own time schedule, and can be done by the child during the day before the argumentative, tired father comes home.
      Thank you for your insight.

  8. Sue Landsman says:

    Just posted before, but just had to add “Thanks!” I wouldn’t have made the connection with what I’ve been reading and parenting, and it also occurs to me that this is one excellent reason to unschool — by doing so you’re in a way flipping a switch away from the fear and doubt-based way of doing things and letting your cerebral vortexes do their magic.

  9. Awesome! It took me awhile but this is exactly the kind of mom I strive to be!

  10. What a beautiful post! I sometimes get an eye-roll from other moms because they think I’m a crazy over-achiever… but it’s not about that. It’s just about doing the right thing. Thank you so much for sharing! :)

  11. I was searching randomly on Facebook, not knowing exactly what I was looking for, and I landed here. Turns out this is EXACTLY what I was looking for. I’m in tears, as this speaks to my soul in ways I cannot begin to express. I can’t wait to dive further into this amazing community of like-minded thinkers. I’d love to connect with other women who resonate as well. Please feel free to send me a FB friend request @chrisannjoson. Thank you, Dayna!

  12. Wonderful post, Danya. I’m am working toward being that kind of Mom.

  13. Inspiring. Beautiful. Wow. Thank you so much for sharing. This is a post that will motivate me to get up at 3am to start work so that I can retire when I am 30 and create this type of experience for myself.

  14. Beautiful! Your children are so lucky to have a mum like you.

  15. thank you so much, Dayna. I strive for this everyday but I don’t always make it. This is EXACTLY what I needed. I am printing this and will be reading it every day to remind myself of these wonderful moments of being THAT mom. I try and believe I do well but I know I can improve and this is just the thing to remind me every day of what I can do to be a better mom. :)

  16. Grace Quiro-Villarisco says:

    OMG!!!i sooo love these!!!can i share it?…i know i am not 100% like you, but i am on my way 85% more to go…haha..frankly Dyna i follow your blogs, i like what you are doing because of you we leveled up to unschooling my 4 children.

  17. beautiful, tear! this is exactly what being a mother is all about. ;)

  18. I love this and strive to be THAT Mom as well.. So glad I stumbled upin your blog!!

  19. THAT WAS AWESOME! !!!

  20. Chris Rowley says:

    What a beautiful and inspiring piece. Thank you for all of the reminders.

  21. Sara McHugh says:

    All of this sounds nice and can and should be incorporated into every child’s life. However, the reality of this kind of parenting is ultimately not realistic in this day in age. Families are not families anymore. Women alone are raising their children with little or no support. To be able to stay at home and supervise and raise your children this way would require an inheritance, lottery winnings, or welfare. Welfare being the obvious choice here. This type of parenting advocacy takes away from those of us who work hard so to provide for their children. While the lady across the street from me collects every state program entitlement possible to “stay at home and raise her kids.” She reads your blog regularly. Well, I’d like to be with my 13 month old daughter too all the time, but not on the backs of others.

  22. erin waite says:

    Wow that was beautiful!! And i see myself being that mom too….well i am that mom in alot more ways then i realized. I watched your episode on WifeSwap and was appaled how the other mom treated your family. You on the other hand i believe brought a loving nuturing presence that was much needed to her family. Now i will admit i have never heard of Radical unschooling and was curious about how it affects the children …but from what i saw on the show your kids are given a freedom and love that i believe all children need to grow and become their own happy fulfilled persons. I might not go as far as to keep my kuds home 24/7(my son craves social interation with his peers) but im alot like you in way more ways then i would’ve thought.
    I say more power to you !! Oh and as far as your son saying “Damn” to that mean lady….i really didn’t take it as him disrespecting her in any way, shoot some instances call for a damn!! I know there are plenty of typos in this comment(im on a phone forgive me) but you and your family Rock!!! The best to you all!!

  23. I read your words above and fell in love. I’ll be promoting a belief that Anyone Anyage Equal Rights Equal Respect or AAEE (when someone disrespects you just yell, “AAAAAAEEEEEEE!!!!!!!”) is where we need to go as a society. Heard about you for the first time from WifeSwap. You keep going girl. And keep the faith.–love mark :)

  24. This is beautiful. I am going to put this somewhere so I can read it every day…Just beautiful.

  25. As an update to my above comment, I do want to apologize if I sounded harsh or judgmental. I have been raised in an authoritarian environment and while I only agree with that style of learning, I did read further on your website about the milestones for ages being different for unschooled children, such as reading and writing. I did also see the episode of Wife Swap, and what I did take from that is that your children do speak as adults would in dialect, and that impressed me as well as the way you nurture all children, not just your own. While I fear some parents may practice this lifestyle as a license to neglect their children, you have the best of intentions with your style of parenting, and it is not lazy but very involved and includes trips to historical sites and worldly learning, which if one is going to do this lifestyle it would have to include by way of parental involvement in the learning process.

  26. Earthschoolingmama says:

    Yes yes yes !!!! I can relate to this totally
    Wow!!! I was also told that I would learn one day and yes I have learnt that
    My children are happy and full of wonder because
    Of mothering from the heart and soul as I call it
    I too have faced criticism but I persevered because
    I can be no other way and I don’t want to mother
    Any other way , this is what it’s all about
    Thank you Danya for putting it all in words xxx

  27. Proud to say I’m THAT mom too!!! I can’t say I do or have done ALL of the things you listed but most of them, yes, and now I want to do MORE! I never felt like a short order cook when I would make one dish for one son and another for the other yet I allowed others opinions and how I was raised dictate my actions at times! I still have so much to learn but grateful to be following you on this path!

  28. Beautiful and inspiring! <3

  29. This is inspiring for us dads too. Thanks for the article.

  30. I love your ideas about raising children. I love how you treat them with respect…I was really annoyed how Dr. Phil addressed your ideas. He acted as if public school works perfectly for every child. Public school may work for some but there are many children who don’t thrive in public school. Unschooling is such a wonderful alternative for some kids.

    I was surprised that Dr. Phil didn’t see that beauty in letting kids explore and grow up and learn at their own pace. He decided that learning was some kind of a race that the kids would have to keep up with. How wrong he is. I’m pretty sure that most successful people don’t feel they are in a race or a competition they do what love and they love what they do and in the end they learn far more than they can be taught.

    Thanks Dayna I think your children are very lucky to have a parents like you and your husband!!!

  31. carrie wyman says:

    Love this! I am trying my hardest to be the best mom I can be. Wish I could be as confident that I am doing it well.
    Carrie

  32. carrie wyman says:

    Wanted to add that my husband and I decided that I would stay home with the children although we are not wealthy. Who better to raise them than myself. We do have my son attend public school but am not against other types of schooling. As long as we can scrape by on my husbands income we will.
    Carrie

  33. I love this! Thank you for voicing your proud and beautiful self! May we all be THAT Mum… in our own inspired ways. :-)

  34. Dayna- I want you to know that this post inspired me to finally make the change to take my kids out of school. I read it just before going on a special trip with my 7 year old daughter. We stayed up dancing at a friend’s birthday party until 2 am and rode our bikes back to our B&B in the dark on that trip to the Netherlands. She was thrilled and exhilarated and so was I. I am unschooling now and cannot believe the joy and peace I feel at finally being able to LIVE with my kids. Thank you with all my heart.

  35. Thank you, Dana, for your inspiring words. I’m sure I am not the only woman who wants to be “that mom” like you!

  36. I love this: “I’m that Mom who makes mistakes sometimes, but I am not afraid to apologize to my kids. I know in doing so, they will learn that making mistakes is part of learning and growing. They know I am perfectly imperfect.”

    No matter what kind of mom we are we all need to remember that we are perfectly imperfect. I see some fun ideas here I hadn’t thought of doing and must try out.

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