This picture is by Robert Duncan. It's called "Mother & Son" and captures my feelings for my own baby so beautifully. I found this at www.rockymthigh.com/artwork_robertduncan.htm.
His work is beautiful.
Real Moms have super-hearing. It develops as soon as the baby arrives. Because you can't have your eyes on your baby 24/7, you develop this super-hearing ability. You might not hear your husband snoring away like a freight train next to you, but let your baby turn over all the way across the house and you will hear it. You will also develop discerning hearing. You will know when their cries are cries of anger, frustration, or pain and react appropriately. You will know the voices of your children as distinct and different identities. Because I only have one child, my abilities in this area have carried over to my fur-babies. I know when the yowler is Yoda or French, and which trilling purr is Tottie or Misha.
Some days, you feel like you look like this:
Real Moms feel like imposters. Especially first time moms. Just because your body is capable of producing this miraculous being, everyone expects you to be perfect as a mother. Here's a little secret. No one is a perfect mother. Even the mothers who've done it over and over again. All you can do is the best you can.
Real Moms take pride in their children when they make good decisions. After all, the number one job of moms is to raise competent adults. When children make decisions based on real considerations rather than because-I-want/don't want-to, they are on their way to becoming successful grown-ups. I had first-hand experience with this just last week. My son, after his initial enthusiasm, began hating going to his KenPo class. It wasn't the class itself, but just the fact that he had to go and NOT play video games or run around outside. Last week, he actually had a legitimate reason to not want to go (had been to dentist and his mouth still hurt), and Darling Man told him he didn't have to. Z-boy thought about it and decided that he DID want to go. A factor in his consideration? Once he's there and doing his thing, he always feels so much better. He just has to get there. And he decided to go, even though he didn't feel like it.
And of course, moms are also the backstop when kids make their not-so-great decisions as well.
Real Moms succeed quietly, but fail brilliantly. You almost never hear about the good moms on the news. It's always the ones that put their kids in the closets, or leave their children locked in hot cars, or beat them, or abuse them in other ways.
Sometimes they are just careless with their own lives and the children are the ones who suffer.
But they apparently love their kids, and keep on trying - because that's what real moms do.
Real Moms really, really love their kids. They would give them the world if they could do it without spoiling them. They would die for them if it were necessary. They give of their own bodies to sustain their children, whether it's by breast feeding or donating an organ. They say "no" when they have to, even when it results in the words, "I hate you, Mom!"
Real moms know when to hold tight and when to let go.
Real moms run the family... they do dishes, clean bedrooms, wash laundry, keep track of who needs to be where and when, schedules appointments with doctors and dentists, manages money, drive car pools and handle all the daily crises that arise because we are all really circus performers at heart.
Real moms know how to make it all better with just love and a well-placed kiss.
Real moms - just like you and me.