How to Develop a Lifetime Relationship with your Mom.

Mum, Mother, Maami, Deda, Ahm, Mutter, Madre, Mater….. Whatever language you speak and however it is spelt, the person (Woman) who bears this name and holds this position in your life is a blessing indeed!

Being a mother of three amazing children, I can tell you without mincing words that motherhood is divine! It is usually said that the womb in a woman makes her different from her male counterpart. Carrying life in that womb and birthing that life into the world is a privilege that only God gives. Being a mother is the dream of every girl ( My 5-year old daughter still asked me some days ago how many more years she has before she becomes a Mummy and she’s hoping she won’t forget some things she’s learning now to be able to teach her own children!!) Apart from all that being pregnant comes with, the birth of a child is one blessing most women won’t trade for anything.

I know there are exceptions – a girl/lady/woman gets pregnant, tries aborting to no avail, births the child, packages the child in a carton and places in a gutter or by a dump site…., A mother decides to walk away from her husband and children and never look back…..- but thankfully, there are only exceptions not the rule! The woman you call Mother (biological/adopted) laboured over you physically, spiritually, mentally, psychologically and indeed in every way right from the time she discovers your first heartbeats though her stomach was still flat. You came into her world and her whole life, Spirit, soul and body changed significantly. There is a bond between a mother and her child (each child uniquely bonded) that ONLY God has details of.

All these said, I personally feel that it is a part of the package for there to be a deep, intimate relationship between a mother and her children especially her daughters. In the past, I think daughters were close to their mothers, learning from them(by choice or by force) and gleaning from their wisdom and experiences to be great mothers too. But over the years, with so many factors especially technological advancements that keep widening the communication gap, female children have found solace in other things and people and have chosen to sacrifice the friendship that should have been shared with their mums.

I imagine that a significant percentage of ladies reading this post are not exactly friends with their mums and I can totally relate because I was not while growing up. But I have learnt my lessons, still working on being my mom’s friend and being very intentional about being my daughter’s friend, actually best friend after Jesus, if her dad does not supercede me😃.

So let me share with you, some of the things I believe would help a greatdeal.
1. UNDERSTANDING
This is so crucial in every form of human relationship and particularly in a mother-daughter lifetime friendship. What should you seek to understand?
A. Understand that she has a past! My dear, the woman you call Mom has a unique journey and story that she might not have told you before. Your Mom has had her own fair share of struggles, highs, lows, pain, joys and everything that comes with being human and female. She also has/had a mom and it is very likely that she is ‘mothering’ you the way she was ‘mothered’. While some of us have fantastic grandmothers, some of us have not-so-awesome grandmothers or we never even knew our grandmothers. While some of our Moms have had life-changing encounters with God that have totally transformed them from the inside out, others are at different stages of the process while a few are yet to come to terms with their need for a change. The next time you look at or think about your mom, remember she is human, she is female, she loves you, she is doing her best to be her best and if there is anything she is not doing, she’s either working at it or she is ignorant of it.

B. Understand she has love languages! Because your Mom is different from you, she very likely understands love differently. I believe everyone speaks the five love languages but to varying degrees and priorities. For there to be some level of intimacy with your Mom, you need to carefully discover what makes her tick. Which love language is 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th for her? The five love languages, in no particular order, are Quality Time, Giving/Receiving Gifts, Physical Touch, Words of Affirmation and Acts of Service. Once you discover this about your Mom, you are able to connect with her more intimately. We all know love when we see it and especially when it is spoken in our language and specific dialect! Love breaks walls and NO ONE resists love!!!

C. Understand she loves you! I have heard, but it is really hard to imagine why, that there are mothers who hate their children. It is very likely that in the beginning it was not so. It is possible that there were bad experiences or memories that the birth of such children bring to their mothers and they are yet to heal. Well, like I’m learning – it’s not good to make conclusions until you hear the full story from the horse’s (mother’s) mouth. So there are exceptional cases. But more often than not, there is a mother’s love for a child that is very unique, so much that if not contained, can cause serious friction between couples. The mother’s love is sacrificial, deeply sacrificial! Mothers go to any length to make sure their children are very fine and have a better future than their own past.

Please dear, understand that your Mom loves you! She wants the very best for you, she doesn’t want you to make any mistake she made and you might be shocked to discover that she doesn’t want you to be like her because she might feel she’s not been her best for you.

2. PRAYER
There is an amazing power, that is better experienced than explained, that comes when we pray for those we are not in good terms with. Talking to God about our displeasure or dissatisfaction in our relationship with our Moms, is one sure way to heal fast (Matthew 11:28). One reason I find this effective is that the decision about whose womb would bear you and birth you was 100% a God-decision. It was entirely God’s idea that your Mom would be your Mom so if you have issues with that idea, your best bet is to talk to the owner of the idea. The more you pray for her, the more likely she would be open to friendship with you because God, who sees and knows it all, would work on her, in her and sort things for her, making her a lot more vulnerable with you.

3. COMMUNICATION
A lot of us assume very often. We unknowingly (so I think) expect people to be able to read our minds or know what we are thinking or how we are feeling without telling them. So we get angry at them for not being able to decipher what we are thinking or feeling and we judge them wicked or unfair. We are quick to forget that our Moms are as human and lomites as we are. Though Mothers are intuitive, their human limitations make them fall short once in a while and sometimes, those once-in-a-while times are the times we need them most.
So you need to talk with Mummy and stop assuming she knows. Sometimes, she also reacts because she assumes wrongly about you and I know how painful this usually is. The solution is for you to talk with her. I imagine someone saying how will I sit with my mom and start a conversation? You can start by writing a letter to show your love and ask for her audience, then send it with a gift of something you know she would really appreciate (possibly meet an immediate need). Letters have an emotional way of touching hearts. She would most likely read the letter more than once. How about taking her out on a date (eating/ shopping/ spa or movie date)?
One major thing that I have found with our generation is that we ‘feel’ more spiritual than our parents so there is a subtle feeling of pride that causes outright defiance. Let me inform you that she might not have your revelation of God but she is fully convinced of her own revelation. If there is anything you think she should know but she doesn’t know or she’s not seeing your view on a matter, instead of shouting or being disrespectful in any way, pray that God explains to her and talk with her respectfully and softly. It is not in your power to change anyone, you know!
Communication is key! You and Mummy need to be on the same page most of the time and whenever (the few times) you are not, trust God for the wisdom to reach a reasonable compromise.

The summary for me is this: to build a lifetime friendship with your Mom, you need to understand her, pray for her, effectively communicate with her. You will be surprised at how much more she desires this friendship than you do. Please know that it’s never too late to start being friends with your Mom, the rest of her years are just enough for you to value her and make her motherhood journey sweet. Please be warned that this might take time, effort and there might be some twists and turns, so prepare yourself to give this whatever it will take. Do your very best knowing God will do that part you cannot do and you can be sure He will do His perfectly and beautifully!!!!

With Love from a Mom and Daughter,
Titilope

Meet the Author:

Titilope Adigun is a Pharmacist by profession. She is a wife, mother and partner-in-ministry by calling. She currently works in Mine Teenage Ministry where she mentors and counsels teenagers, especially teen girls.

ADULTING 105: PURSUE AND LIVE YOUR DREAMS

Mrs. Olajumoke Adenowo is a Nigerian Architect, Pastor, founder of AD consulting, author, radio host, convener and philanthropist. I’ve been learning her life story for a while now to know how she has been able to live a fulfilled life. She has been a lover of art, creativity and building works since she was little. She grew to love these things more and decided to put all her God-given talents to work and how these paid off well. Today, Africans celebrate her works and she is an inspiration to many women.

Have you ever imagined being a lady who has her to-do-list all ticked?
Okay, you know the feeling that comes with it, yeah? That’s exactly how you feel when your wish is granted.

Let’s take a brief look at the meaning of the word “dream”, it simply means to hope or wish. Now, how do you pursue or live your dreams?
As a young lady, I never really had the opportunity of being properly mentored. I was growing to be that comely and successful woman I’ve always dreamed of. As I grew, I realised my academics was my primary priority as regards fulfiling my dreams, so I geared up. Little by little, God helped me. Over the years, many more things that I love to do began to unravel and I had to spend time brainstorming and achieving those things too. It might be overwhelming but with the help of God, from time to time, no matter how huge your dreams are, as long as you’re ready, it will come to pass.

Remember your dream is your hope or wish. Well, this is what every individual has in mind consciously or unconsciously; you surely desire something for your life. Nobody ever lives just to live, we definitely look forward to a wish or grant. As we grow, our minds grow too, we begin to think, make strategies and map out certain plans. Take note that this is a peculiar attribute of an adult, no little child would really have plans figured out at a tender age. At the stage of adulthood, your mindset is developed and ready to establish certain things.
Below are few points highlighted to help you;

1. Be diligent: The conscientious of work is what we describe as diligence, anybody can work but not everyone finds it worthwhile and yielding. The determination and drive to work will go a long way in helping you live your dreams. It is a process that must be strategic. In the long run, you find your dreams turn to goals then to pass. Those who dertermine to reach their goals elevated and found amongst the best.

The appetite of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the appetite of the diligent is abundantly supplied (Proverbs13:4 AMP).
Do you see a man diligent and skillful in his business? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men (Proverbs 22:29 AMP)
Be diligent.

2. Set realistic goals: The process may seem tasking but trust me, you have to painstakingly get what you desire. The goals you set are your aims and they must be as achievable as possible. For example, if you want to be a renowned fashion designer, you wouldn’t fold your arms at home and begin to imagine, you must set out and set aside i.e enrol in a fashion class, get a fashion icon and learn from that person, read and learn about styles and trends. You should also get mentored by someone who is in that field, of course a professor cannot mentor in such area. Dear friend, gear up!

3. Pursue and live: Yes, purse and live. You may have some setbacks while trying to make it happen but you will only mar your efforts if you relent. Look back at where you started and get back on your feet again. Avoid criticism, this may hinder your progress. Apostle Paul is a perfect example of someone who pursue and lived his dreams regardless of the tough circumstances, he wrote; I have fought the good (worthy, honorable, and noble) fight, I have finished the race, I have kept (firmly held) the faith. [As to what remains] henceforth there is laid up for me the [victor’s] crown of righteousness [for being right with God and doing right], which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me and recompense me on that [great] day—and not to me only, but also to all those who have loved and yearned for and welcomed His appearing (His return) (2Timothy 4:7,8 AMP). Allow your goals flow beyond imagination and make God and man proud of you. Yes you!

4. Acknowledge God: This is the last but most important point; as children of God, He wants us to trust in Him completely and wait for the right time, you must understand that even while you wait on God, you have to continually pray. Rest in Him and know that He is a God of times and seasons. You surely acknowledge God in your desires when you make your supplications known to Him, solely trust Him and let go of any decision He doesn’t want for you. As the psalmist wrote; Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart.Commit your way to the Lord [roll and repose each care of your load on Him]; trust (lean on, rely on, and be confident) also in Him and He will bring it to pass (Psalm 37:4,5 AMP). The world has evolved, things have changed and this has given us many options to freely live. Yet, there is a standard that can never be jeopardized or taken for granted; it’s the Lord’s standard. We do not outlive His words, for it brings truth and peace to us.

Have you discovered your dreams yet?
Are you making the right decisions and setting achievable goals?
Have you prayed it about and it seem like nothing is happening? If yes, share your story we want to learn and help you!

MEET THE AUTHOR

Agbedeyi Dorcas Bonuola, is a certified biochemist and Vice president of Build Nigeria Scheme. She loves writing, brainstorming and helping people.