Elydia turned 10 months a couple of weeks ago and she just started walking.
It’s been a joy to be her mom, nurture her, raise her, breastfeed her, take care of her, and watch her grow, explore, and learn.
I love teaching her the basic things in life and meanwhile, she teaches me the deepest truths I need to learn.
Babies teach us simple lessons, and yet, they are not easy.
When Jesus said we need to be like a baby, he was teaching us just how enlightened these little beings are, even when we think they are helpless.
Lessons We Can Learn From A Baby
These are the most surprising lessons I’ve learned from my baby since her birth:
Love The You In The Mirror
When was the last time you giggled with joy when you looked at yourself in the mirror?
When Elydia sees her own reflection, her face lights up, her eyes twinkle, and her smile goes from ear to ear. She then kisses the mirror!
I’ve been on a journey of embracing the way my face and my body look, being more reverent to the miracle of being on this Earth and wearing an “earth suit.”
I’ve adopted the mantra “treat your body like it belongs to someone you love (because it does),” and I’ve made so much progress in my own body positivity.
Even so, Elydia has inspired me to actually celebrate how I look, like I never have before.
I’m no longer checking whether my arm looks fat in the photo before I post it, or whether I sucked in my belly before it was taken.
It’s ironic how now that I lost most of my precious photos, I wish I had those photos of myself I criticized without mercy.
And then again, I’m grateful that I can take more pictures now and not be self-conscious… or at least less self-conscious. God knows I’m a work in progress.
Celebrate Every Step
Elydia started taking small steps at 9 months. You should have seen the pride on her face.
She was absolutely empowered to be on her two strong chubby legs. One foot forward and flop, she falls on her knees and hands.
And she doesn’t cry. No, no, no. She looks at me with a sense of accomplishment and proceeds to clap for herself!
Babies are not hard on themselves when they are learning. They celebrate every step and keep going.
She doesn’t hurry herself or think she should be farther than she is or go further than she goes.
Instead, she keeps taking small steps – with joy, with excitement, with a certain belief that she’ll achieve it.
And when she falls, she focuses on the steps she did take, not the ones she hasn’t taken yet.
I found myself counting the steps she took, and realizing it doesn’t even matter.
Why am I doing math and wanting to quantify this miracle?
Because of Elydia, I’ve learned to be in the moment, and to focus on the puzzle pieces of my life that are in place and not on the pile of pieces that haven’t been yet put in or what is missing in the picture.
Practice Fearless Authenticity
Do you worry about what people will think, believe, or say about you?
This has probably been the biggest block for me to actually live life on my own terms, and observing Elydia has helped me see the light.
I’ve made so many choices just out of a need of approval, even when I didn’t even know if that’s what I wanted, or what’s worse, knowing that it was exactly the opposite of what I wanted.
Babies are not worried about what anyone thinks.
Babies live in the moment.
Babies are authentic all the time!
Elydia really doesn’t even for a second entertain a doubt when she wants or needs to do something – and I am learning from her.
She pees when it’s time to pee – without holding it. I’m not suggesting we pee our pants as adults, but as moms, we have a very ill relationship with our own needs, even the most primal ones.
She eats without worrying whether it will go to her thighs. I am health-conscious and I enjoy eating healthy and abstaining from harmful substances, and I am happy about those choices.
What I am learning this time around is to shush that voice that asks, not whether something is healthy, but whether something will make me “look fat.” Such a damaging voice!
She laughs without reservation. I have censored my laugh so many times, because someone thought it was too loud or not “lady-like” enough. Forget that!
She tries something new without fear. You may think there’s a reason for fear. I agree… but fear can prevent us from growing. Those fearless babies grow and grow and grow.
She rests without guilt. I still don’t. My mentor
once many times said to me “Elayna, stop using your children as an excuse,” and you know what?
It’s true that I am up at night feeding the baby, but I could make some time to rest and sleep at a different time. I still don’t. There it is again… I still haven’t made it a priority… and I will.
Elydia is teaching me how. She is my reason, not my excuse.
She receives love, help, and attention with open arms. We “grown up women” have a compulsion to help, save, and rescue everyone, while never asking for what we want or what we need, or not accepting it or receiving it when it’s offered.
She is not afraid to seek comfort and support in those she trusts. As a matter of fact, she demands it, and we are grateful that she does.
She gives herself permission to throw a tantrum, without judgment. And then she gets over it. In an instant.
No bitterness, no grudges, just complete self-acceptance for what just happened.
From awe to frustration, she expresses every emotion, and I’m inspired by that.
Becoming like a baby
In Matthew 18:3, in the New Testament, it is recorded that Jesus said:
“Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”
I can say that being a mom has converted me, transformed me, to become more like the little girl I was born to be.
There are so many lessons we can learn from a baby!
Even though Elydia is my fourth baby, I am just starting to learn the lessons that babies are here to teach.
I am grateful for all my babies, and the more I learn from them, the more life feels like heaven!
Can you share lessons we can learn from a baby? Share with us below – and may we keep reminding our babies to not forget the lessons they taught us!
Elayna is a homeschool educator, single mom of 4, founder of the Positive MOM Community, award-winning Storyteller, Story Strategist, and Student of Pain. She’s a bestselling author, internationally acclaimed keynote speaker, and 3x TEDx speaker. To receive a gift from Elayna, click HERE.
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