The Moms We Choose

The moms who bore us gave us life. That alone is worth celebrating today. The moms we choose help build the person we become.

Our biological moms all have strengths and weaknesses. They will screw us up. That’s a given. We don’t come with manuals and even the most experienced parents don’t get everything right. Honor them for giving you life. Everything else that’s good about the relationship is a plus.

Colleen and I used to tell our children that they could blame us for everything we did wrong until they were 18. Then, figuring things out was up to them. Thankfully, both Shelby and Brandon have grown into wonderful humans. We can take only some of the credit. Most of it goes to others who added their own wisdom to our kids’ toolboxes.

The secret to growing up to be a self-actualized adult is watching how others behave and integrating the most productive of those behaviors into who we want to become. That’s where the moms we choose take the stage.

Each person has at least one strength worth emulating. Those who grew up in challenging households often pattern their personalities after mentors, who fill in the gaps biological relatives can’t. Even if you have a 5-star mom, there are acres of diamonds out there in the minds and hearts of men and women, waiting for us to discover them.

We become what we think about and who we associate with, so be careful about the moms you choose. Seek those who radiate kindness, patience, accountability and resilience. Model those who give love freely, avoid negativity, are rational in stressful moments and magnanimous in both victory and defeat.

These are a few of the traits that sustain us in every season of our lives. They are the best lessons we ultimately can teach our own children.

Whether you are a mom, a dad, a relative or a mentor, try to act like the moms we choose. Kids are always watching and you never know when a behavioral moment may be a turning point in someone else’s life.