Being a Good Mom

Meagan Francis of The Happiest Home is a good mom. Scratch that — she’s a great mom! Watch this:

Did you see that? Better yet — did you hear that? Did you hear Meagan laughing as her 16-year-old son flung himself into the snow?

Raising boys is a lot of responsibility. New parents are sometimes overwhelmed when the realize the sheer responsibility that comes with raising a child. You have to feed him, clothe him, help him learn to talk and walk, how to share, how to treat others with respect, how to drive a car, how to navigate social media…and the list goes on and on.

It’s easy for the sense of responsibility to evolve into constant pressure. We want our kids to be healthy, so we sometimes feel as if we have to do everything in our power to keep them healthy — and “everything” may include limiting playdates during cold season, wiping down doorknobs at grandmas house and insisting our kids wear hats and gloves each and every time they go outside. Some of those actions may be sane. I mean, it’s never a good idea to have a playdate with a kid whose nose is dripping green snot, non-stop. But no playdates? All winter? That’s going a bit overboard.

Yet it happens. A lot of well-meaning parents unintentionally limit their kids’ activities in an attempt to keep their kids safe or on the “right track.”

But here’s what I learned, years ago: Doing the “right” thing all the time is exhausting, and it creates distance between me and my boys. I want my kids to be safe; they want to have fun.

Luckily for me (and my kids), I have multiple children. I couldn’t be everywhere all the time, so sometimes my kids got away with things I might not have otherwise allowed. And guess what? They survived — and I learned that I can be looser.

Gradually, I learned that there’s no harm — and a heck of a lot of good — in letting go and going with the flow. Boys like to be silly sometimes, so why not let them? Better yet, why not join in?

I won’t go as far as diving in the snow, but if my boys want to, why not? One brief dive in the snow isn’t going to hurt anything — but it might just create some lasting memories and a whole lot of fun. As Meagan knows, that’s how to have a happy home.

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