As a child, my mom was perfect. She could do no wrong. Sure we’d fight and I’d get mouthy and say mean things and she’d yell and take away a toy or a privilege. But that would end and I’d be left with the best mom in the world.
She knew how to make boos boos go away. She took me to special mother-daughter breakfasts. She gave me random cards that said how much she loved me. She baked cookies with me and let me lick the spoon. She had the most beautiful smile and an amazing laugh.
About a year ago, I sat on the couch with my daughter watching American Idol. When Jennifer Lopez walked out, she nonchalantly said, “She looks really pretty tonight, but not as pretty as you.”
The other night we were watching the show and I asked her if she remembered telling me that. She said, “Yeah and you’re still prettier than her.”
The truly amazing part is that she really believes it. To my daughter, I am beautiful. I am the best mom in the world. I give the best hugs. I make the best dippy eggs. I’m a great dancer and singer. I do everything perfectly to take care of her when she’s sick. I am the best at all of the things that matter most in her world.
To my daughter, I am not fat. I’m not clumsy. I’m not awkward and socially inept. I don’t have bad teeth or frizzy hair. I’m not tone deaf. It doesn’t matter to her if the house is a little (or a lot) messy. It doesn’t matter to her how much money I make or what kind of clothes I wear.
To my daughter, I’m perfect just the way I am. I am to her what my mom was to me.
I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately. I’ve been thinking about how many of my problems would disappear if I could learn to see myself through my daughter’s eyes.
I have always said that we can learn a lot from our children if we just take the time to listen. I’m trying. I really am.