Anyone who knows me knows I have three children which are my everything, Stephen, Spencer & Sophia Levy. My husband said he knew everything about the kids within 3 seconds of meeting me. Like many mothers our identity is wrapped within our “motherhood” status and mine was challenged several years ago during a custody battle. For a long time, I considered myself a failure for only having the kids half of the week and always tried to teach them everything I thought they needed to know in half the time that other mothers had. One of the great lessons I have been taught during this spiritual journey is that motherhood doesn’t define me. And making the choice to leave an unhealthy marriage is a lesson to them to put themselves first. My ex-husband has married the most amazing woman. My daughter and I were talking about this a few weeks ago. I reminded her that sometimes what appears bad at the moment reveals itself to be the best thing ever, just a short while later. I told her that a divorce seemed to be a bad idea, but now she has two stepparents that adore her and her parents are happy. My decision back in 2003 set the stage for the amazing life we all have now.
I have been in education my entire adult life. I have been teaching at the college level since I was 21 and have been a College-level administrator for the past 7 years. I have had thousands of students, but none as special as these three children. We have very frequent family meetings, we discuss everything openly and I think I appreciate the time with them so much because it’s shortened.
I’ve always said that motherhood is the only job where you have to wait until the end of your life to see if you’ve done a good job. As a Cuban, know that we do not believe in nursing homes. Hence the “Cuban Condos” all around South Florida, curiously known as “the mother-in-law quarters”. Well, I received a glimpse of the future today, and I was so excited with what I experienced.
I have taught the kids that I do not want someone to say “your son is so successful wow, what a great job he has”, or “wow, your daughter really lives in a nice house”. My opinion of true measures of success is when they’re described as ethical, respectful, spiritual and service-oriented. I do not focus on excellence in grades, but rather excellence in character. I am a natural born teacher and fortunately for them they’re my top students. They would argue otherwise, but I always win since I tell them they picked their parents
My daughter said to me yesterday that her father insists she read “The Secret”. She told him “what do I need that book for, I have Mom. She knows all that stuff and she is always teaching us”. My son once told me “Mom, you’re our teacher of life”. They’re mini-psychological and spiritual gurus because they know how to reiterate all of the lessons I’ve taught them. However, I always tell them to find their own path. Figure it out yourself. Own your own life and live your own life!
Like every mother, I doubt my abilities, my decisions, and always wonder “is this the moment I screwed them up for life”? These poor kids chose a weirdo for a mom, but I want to encourage them to be as weird or as kooky as they want and if I teach them nothing more than to follow their own heart, then I did my job.
My daughter plays lacrosse and does not like bringing her stick to school. On the Wednesdays that she goes to her dad’s house she must schlep it school, today was one of those days. She says she feels weird, doesn’t want to be seen with it and that middle school is hard enough to have to bring a stick with her LOL. Last night she begged that I bring her to school by 8:30 so she can place the stick in the front office. School doesn’t start until 9:20 but she wanted to get there early before anyone could see her. This is a child who never wants to be dropped off early and wants to always sleep “5 more minutes”! Today she was up very early and ready to go at 8:08. Sadly, her brothers weren’t. When we were pulling up to school around 8:36 am this morning, my son says “we are already late why don’t we sit in the car and talk” OMGG I could not believe my ears? I have talks with them every day, about everything, they listen, but usually want me to shut up. Family meetings, they say “okay make it quick mom, we already know the lesson” and start spewing every lesson I ever taught them so they can shorten the meeting trying to guess what I am going to talk about. So to hear my son REQUEST a talk, Mother’s Day came early!
I had meditated early that morning and shared “the daily message for humanity” I received with them . Today it was “Your lack of perfection is perfect.” I told them that that was the message for the day and that it should teach them to love what is different about them. That the things they find weird, ugly or different are the exact things that make them unique. I told them no one will ever be the same as them and to embrace the qualities that make them different. My son asks, “but what if we don’t like those parts”? Well, then that’s the lesson. That’s the point, learning to embrace those not-so-favorite parts of ourselves, because those are the ones that you’ll be remembered by fondly.
He said, “we should do this more often!”. KEEP IN MIND we do this daily on the way to school, after school, during pay-per-view movies, I am always asking “what’s the lesson” and teaching them something. They say “Mom, stop!” They listen because they’re forced to so to hear him say “we should do this more often”…who could ask for more!?I may still have to wait until the end of my life to see if I did things right (and hopefully not end up in a nursing home), but today I got a glimpse that I’m on the right track.
To all you parents out there that don’t think that you’re being heard, take this as proof that you are. They’re listening to everything, the good and the bad. If you’re too focused on good grades, excellence in sports, dating the right person…none of that matters. Our children need reminders and reinforcement. Reminders that they are beautiful just the way they are. They should embrace the differences they were blessed with. Those are the ones that will give them courage, strength, freedom, and self love….and that’s really all we want for them when we push grades, sports and everything else we ask of them.
I have made many mistakes as a parent, and I’m sure I’ll continue to, but when the Universe gives us glimpses into our children’s hearts, like they blessed me with today, it gives me the strength to keep on trying to be the best mom ever.
In my meditation today I was shown a cow. I get animal totems almost daily in meditation for a message the guides wish to give me for the day. When I looked up the symbolism of a cow this is what I found “In many cultures the cow is symbolic of Mother Earth, and has been a symbol of fertility, nurturing, and power. To Hindus and Buddhists, “symbolism of the cow deals with patience and holiness”. This part really resonates with me because I find I have learned so much patience being a mother, and if you know me you know I am not much of a patient person [my husband can attest to that!], but most importantly, being a mother is holiest job of all.
Thank you SL CLUB for having picked me in this lifetime. You have been my greatest teachers yet!