The more things change the more they stay the same, OR Help! I am becoming my Mother!!

| April 25, 2013 | 5 Comments

Mom & MeLots has changed since I was a little girl: eating in a restaurant only happened on the most special of occasions, my peers and I all went home from school for lunch, ‘the web’ referred to the creation the giant spider made on the rusty wrought iron railings of the front steps, and as far I as I knew, Smurfs were grey – we had a black and white TV, only one.  A lot has changed, so it is odd I hear my mother’s voice escaping my lips more and more, as of late.

The more things change the more they stay the same. Or so the saying goes.  Here is a short list of things my Mother used to say:

1. “Money does not grow on trees”:  It is no secret and I have written about it before, my husband and I make a conscious effort to teach our children fiscal awareness and responsibility from a young age.  Making choices and understanding that disposable income is not unlimited is important.  This is proving, like most other points in this list, to take a lot of reinforcement before the notion sinks into their young minds.

Money doesn't grow on trees

2.  “Because I said so!”: Under most circumstances, I am more than happy to give my children an explanation for a decision, or even to entertain an argument in their favour. I am, also however, in the habit of saying no, from time to time, just for the sake of saying no.  No explanation required.  We are the parents and it is up to us to make good choices for our children.  It is up to them to trust us, and learn to listen to and follow direction. Life doesn’t always give us everything we want and understanding this early can’t hurt. This isn’t the regular practice and by no means the norm, but certainly sometimes, it is just plain no.

3. “Pick up your clothes off the floor, and for goodness sakes turn them right before putting them in the laundry basket:” What is with kids and just throwing their clothes?  Pick them up!! Turn them right side out.  Take your underwear out of your pants and put them in the laundry!! Like my first point, I sometimes feel as though I am beating a dead horse.  Didn’t we have this same discussion yesterday?  I know the day is coming when it becomes a matter of routine, but at bedtime tonight, I expect I will find the clothes on the floor.  That said, I also know that my children will grow up to be adults that look after their things, and this gives me strength to deliver this speech one more time.

Scissors4. “Where are my scissors? They are not in the scissors’ spot!!!”:  We used to keep the family scissors in a kitchen drawer.  This is interesting for two reasons.  A.) We only had ONE pair of scissors. And B.) there was hell to pay if they couldn’t be found there. They were made from steel, very old, heavy, and sharp.  They cut like a dream.  We were allowed to use them at will, but they had to be returned to the ‘scissors’ spot’.  I don’t think a week went by that I don’t recall my Mother asking, *yelling*, “Where are the scissors?”  My sister and I would roll our eyes and deny we had them.  Eventually, they would be located  and all forgiven, but not before the recurring lecture on why it is important to return things to where they go. (It is the responsible and courteous thing to do.) Now, as the Mother of three, I completely understand, and I cannot stop the overwhelming wave of empathy for my Mother’s frustration every time I reach for our scissors, and they are not there. Not to mention, I want to stomp my foot just a wee bit, as I hear my Mother’s words echoing in my mind, “I wish you someone exactly like yourself one day!”

5. “Look at my eyes!”:  We had a thinking stool in our house long before the time-out chair was fashionable.  It was an old milking stool.  Being naughty bought you time on the stool to think about your choices.  After sitting for what felt like a million years, my Mother would hunch down and demand to know what I had done wrong, why I was on the ‘thinking stool’ and why I wasn’t going to do it again. All the while she looked directly into my eyes and demanded the same in return.  There is no ignoring the authority figure when they are that close. She was not to be ignored.  Surprise, surprise! Neither am I.  The very same stool now sits in our family room.  While it doesn’t get as much action as I remember when I was a child, there is no question that I am making as much eye contact with my offspring, as my Mother did with me.  And the awesome thing is, this works, the chances they will repeat offend, when reprimanded while looking me in the eye, is slim.  Hmmm, maybe I need to deliver “pick up your clothes and put them in the laundry” at close range…Stool

There are more that could be added, “Eat your supper!! There are boys and girls who have no food” and I am sure you have one or two of your own.  While I do not think I am turning into my Mother, I do have a new sense of appreciation for her parenting and the awesome life skills she took the time to teach me. Each of these points has impacted my life as a mother and an entrepreneur: fiscal responsibility, problem solving, valuing assets, sharing/being a team player, and communication skills.  I guess at this stage, I would not hesitate to agree that Mother does know best, easier to swallow now that I belong to that club.

Ever enthused,

Shauna Rae

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Category: Business, Family, Kids, Living, Moms, Relationships

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  1. So true!!! My Mom had tons of great sayings that I am happy to repeat, but why is it the ones I hated that I find myself saying to my own kids! lol! “Look with your eyes,not with your mouth”. … my Mom would say when we would ask “where is my….?” I hated that expression, but I have said it to my own kids!

    great post.. makes me wonder what my kids will repeat from my own mouth one day- my own words, or my mother’s?

  2. kathy downey says:

    This post is so true…

  3. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    I really enjoyed reading this, it’s all so very true. We got our first black & white TV when I was about 10 yrs old, a car when I was about 14yrs old. And yes, my mother used a lot of the same expressions too – as I did with my children. Though I do think that I was more lenient with my children than she was with us. What goes around comes around as the saying goes 🙂

  4. Fan R says:

    I like Because I said so, there is no time or wish or reason to explain, it is just right.

  5. kathy downey says:

    Haha this post brings back so many good memories

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