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Being a mum…

October 9, 2012, 1 Comment

An Interview with Sharon of Oak Tree Baby by myplayschool.net

by on September 21, 2012

I am Sharon, a stay home mum of two boys, aged 3.5 and 5.  We are a family who is passionate to see the next generation rise to become strong and we love to empower others to do the same.  My blog Oak Tree Baby was founded on the basis of growing strong kids and not just smart ones.  Our days are filled with simple pleasures of playground, nature play, and regular time spent together cuddling up with piles of story books or toy cars and jumbo trucks running over the bed or mummy! The best vocation I’ve had for years and it feeds on love. Motherhood, what can be better?

Is there a true benefit for kids who have stay-at-home moms, versus a working mom?

I think there is no one mother who is better than the other because she is perceived to be more sacrificial, or because she is someone who can do more with less, nor is it about the supermum-cum-great looking bod-butt-boobs combination.  A mother’s love is the greatest one on earth and one that is good enough for her child/children.

Is staying home beneficial for kids? Yes, I think so.

To quote an analogy by James Dobson, “if a piece of steak is delicious, will you eat it just once a year?”  Hence my take is that quality time must be sustained by quantity. I stay home simply because our presence is what our children need.  My husband also tries to spend as much time as he can with the boys. From as young as when the kids were babies, he would bathe them before he goes off to work. Now he has breakfast with the boys and reads the Bible to them everyday before he leaves for the office.  He also has dinner with us everyday.   I think great relationships happen when everyone is intentional about it.

I am a work-in-progress. I stay home not because I can do all things, but precisely because I can’t, my children see the real world through me.

In the process, I am learning to invest my time in things that matter, to be more understanding towards my family, to give up my preferences and learn to cook!  I am learning to be a better mum and wife. I don’t stay home to be perfect for my children, rather I stay home to be present.

What is the best thing moms can do when raising their children?

We live in an imperfect world so nothing can be fool proof even though we do the ‘best’ things. Despite of it, we should still try to give our best shot.  Parenting is a journey of faith. It is mentorship. I recalled having planted seeds in our garden and watered it for weeks, yet I did not see a single sprout. Parenting is like that especially with very young kids. We had to keep watering despite not seeing any signs of change. Then I found out if we don’t take care of the soil, good seeds would not grow. Taking care of the hearts of children is as important as planting good seeds.

Just like there is no one best food, we attempt to give our children a balanced diet.

Children need our presence

As a mum, my role is to nurture, build up, mentor and teach. And these goals affect what I do daily. Parental love takes shape differently in different families. For parenting younger children especially, spending time together is important. By being present, I learn to understand our children and their ways.  We learn to understand their hearts and the way they are created to learn. I find it very amazing how children can be so innocent yet be so sophisticated in the way they interpret what they see, touch or feel.

I can tell when one of my boys said “I finished my milk” and without looking I know he hasn’t!

I would venture to say that to give out love, we must first be able to love ourselves. We cannot give what we don’t possess. The trouble is that many people stopped at loving themselves.  True love involves investing in something worthwhile, and while there is pain and hardship, we must have eyes to see beyond what is present.  Often the return on investment far outweighs the tears even if the journey is long.

I love myself by making sure I have adequate sleep, indulge in yummy food once in a while, and being in a community of love.

Children need exemplary models

I take delight on the fact that I am available for lots of real time face-to-face conversations.  With technology these days, communications between parents and child are sometimes reduced to mobile communications or at best video conferencing.

Children watch how we handle our own mistakes, frustrations, disappointments, and how conflict is being resolved or not within our own family. They watch how we express love, prepare surprises or apply problem-solving skills.

Sometimes it is hilarious when they speak and act like us, little adults in their cutesy diapers. That is exactly how they learn and in turn relate to others. It is a privilege but such a tall order some days isn’t it? The greatest life lessons are not the ones taught in classrooms, it is ‘caught’. Taking care of our own spirit hence becomes utmost important. I say “To change them, we must first change ourselves”. My husband and I are convinced that their formative years be spent wisely and among exemplary models because they are at their fullest potential to emulate and take in all that is around them.

Both my husband and I too have mentors we can go to easily. I always make sure I have mentors in my life, not only because I am embarking a difficult journey or am new in something, but it is always good to have someone wiser to help with the check and balance in our lives.  We both too enjoy mentoring other new parents or those who needed a hand from time to time.

Children needs our vote of confidence

We believe that the more my husband and I are in love with each other, the more the children will feel secure.  Confidence is the opposite of fear. Fear paralyses, confidence pushes. As a couple, we not only spend time together regularly, we also spend time together without the children. We try to speak each other’s love language and do our best to work through challenges.  Compared to when we first had a child, our relationship has improved when we take time to work through our conflicts and communicate more regularly.

Share with us…What you

Love

Wisdom, peace, love, rain, cream, people, music, nature, miracles, parenting, art, cafes, prophetic art, zumba, laughter, babies, being soaked in presence of God, educational psychology, dreaming, books, worship , dolphins, horses, plays & dramas, writing, interior decorations,  Korean dramas, see people walk in their destiny, mentorship, inspirational living.

Hope

One of my greatest dreams is to be able to live in different parts of the world for a short stint each time and take my family with me. I love to be involved in missions. I have travelled to 7 different countries for short term missions before I was married. My husband is mission-minded too so our dream is to take our family along the next time round.

I think when we live and learn how others live, as well as to understand their pain, we learn to love and accept everyone for who they are. I love making friends from all over the world.

There is only so much to prosperity. Beyond what is sufficient, we see greed, arrogance and vanity. Importantly, I like to lose my self-consciousness so that I can be more others-centric.

Have Faith In

I believe in living an abundant life. Not a busy life or one that I am compelled to prove my worth but a life of freedom to do what I am created to do and flourish.

Top 10 random thoughts on an abundant life:

  • Being able to taste goodness and still be able to live in awe.
  • Being child-like and not figure things out too much sometimes.
  • Being able to be contented with little or much.
  • Being surrounded by friends who believed in us and push us further in our growth
  • Being able to reach out and touch someone, but our lives are changed in return.
  • Being able to parent; the greatest journey of mentorship. Knowing that life does not revolve around our children or me alone, but a larger part of who we are; our community.
  • Being able to let sand run through our fingers and know that time is precious so we relish the moment yet remember our destiny/eternity.
  • Being able to see the invisible, so that the visible becomes possible.
  • Being able to wake up and breathe and be thankful in everything big or small.

Being a mum, but more than a mum, I am first a child of God.

Thanks Sharon!
This post first appeared on myplayschool.net

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One Response to “Being a mum…”

  1. Fatboy_Joe says:

    This is gotta be one of the most inspiring articles on parenting that I have ever read. Especially with so much reports on the uncertainties challenges of the “Millenial generation”.

    Thanks for sharing and building our faith!

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