What Makes a Happy Mother?

A happy mother brings into being a happy home. A happy home brings forth happy children and a content husband. So what makes a happy mother? Well, it’s certainly not based on any sense of a “feeling.” In fact, I’d venture to say that a happy mother isn’t really “happy” in the sense of feeling at all but more in the sense of her overall state of being.

Here’s what I mean. My three year old just dumped out every toy he has in the family room floor. The baby has just started crying for his feeding. My seven and nine year old begin arguing over who’s going to get what Barbie, and my five year old hasn’t moved after being asked to take his folded laundry to his room. Now who can honestly feel happy about all that? I mean, you’d have to be nearly out of your mind to “feel” like putting on a Windex smile while the kids are tracing their names on the bathroom mirrors.

So here’s another scenario. What if you were learning to paint? Your teacher instructs you at every lesson. You try your best but you’re still not getting it. You notice your teacher’s scowl of frustration. Her eyes roll as she corrects you. You begin to feel discouraged, wishing that your teacher would just understand that in time, with practice, and with many mistakes you’ll grow and become a better painter.

What if your teacher had a different attitude? What if she were…happy? There would be an air of peace as you’re learning. You would make mistakes but you’d desire to try again. You would be encouraged by the smile on her face. You’d know within your being that when your teacher corrected you, it was with patience because she sincerely wanted to see you be the best that you could be.

To be happy is more than just a bubbly feeling. It is a state of contentment. It’s the ability to smile at your three year old and sing the clean up song while you both pick up the blocks. It’s rocking the baby and speaking sweetly to him while you nurse. It’s bearing a smile and bringing the two arguing children together to pray with them and then, again with a smile, correcting the five year old. To be happy doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with your emotions, but instead, it’s a state of being – a state of inner joy that helps you to push out the smile that your emotions may restrain.

So back to the question here. What is it that makes a happy mother? A smile of inner joy and contentment that infects her children and others. The warmth that she brings forth despite her emotions. A happy mother pours her contentment into her children so that they also spill over with inner joy.

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