Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Authentic Life

Mothers day card by corymbia 
Mother's Day card from my girl...

On Mother's Day, Widow's Voice alumnus writer Jackie Hannam-Chandler posted these words:

I... am an authentic mom. I am real person who makes real mistakes.

She lamented on her role as a solo Mum..... a widowed parent, muddling through this parenting gig alone, without her beloved Jeff,  trying her best for her kids that she can.
.... and her frank admission that she sometimes lets it ALL hang out  - her emotions, her frustrations, her feelings that are not always pretty  - made ME feel like someone else really understood the hard bits of this solo parenting gig. 

So I wrote back to her ....

Your mother's day would describe my day before mother's day - I lost my sh!t  temper at my kids because of the fighting and me having to tell them to do their chores every few minutes.
...and what you describe fits me to a 'T'.... I worked in forestry for a while and picked up the dialect..... I elevate swearing to literary genre.

In other words - the F-word makes its appearance when I am stressed.
In our house, we don't do elaborate holidays, or expensive presents.
We do home grown and home made.
And I lose my freaking shit temper at them more times than I think I should, but I would eviscerate anyone who hurt my kids. 

Jackie wrote: I hope that as they look back at their childhood and shake their heads at my mothering foibles, they also realize that it is okay to be themselves, to be real, to mess up, to be "authentic". Their mama sure was.

Just like Jackie, I hope that my kids can look back on their childhood and not see the messed-up stuff that has happened since their father died, that they see my failings for what they are (grief and stress) and that they also understand that it is important to be themselves and feel their feelings. 
Its OK to mess-up. 
It's OK to stress about things. 
It's even OK to chuck a tanty and swear your head off, so long as you back it up with positives and lots and lots of love.
That grief can change you and bend you, but not break you.
To live your life as a REAL person, and not a phoney. 

To live an Authentic Life.

So I am putting my hand up as being an Authentic Mum (thanks to Jackie) .... with all of my faults.  ...and after receiving my mother's day card (above) I reckon that I am doing OK....
In fact, I think Greg would be proud....


  1. Right on Mama!

  2. I love this thank you for sharing the sometimes ugly truth about how hard this parenting solo really is! I am raising my hand too I want to be more authentic and transparent-more real in my relationships.

  3. It's so hard to count the good things that come after (and even sometimes because of) loss, because it feels like saying we're glad for the death....but learning to be authentic and teaching that to your kids by example?! THAT is a gift beyond measure. Teaching your kids that they get to be authentic and still loved? There's no greater security in life. Priceless.

  4. yes - as the saying (and song) goes - "1 is such a lonely number". I don't think I will ever get used to it. I guess my one comfort is to come on here on a regualr basis and find those that are experiencing so many things that only those of us that are living it understand - then it's not quite so lonely...

  5. Couldn't have said is better.