I talk a lot about the hardships of women, both on here and my daily life. The stress we put on ourselves. The shaming that others chose to heap upon us. Even the judgements we make as we look at others.
A good chunk of the time, I don’t think people are actively trying to be assholes. I think they see/hear something they don’t agree with and they react. That’s not always the case, but it is the case a lot of the time.
What sucks is that it doesn’t necessarily happen both directions. What I mean is, those reactions towards negativity tend to be more forthcoming than reactions towards positivity. So, while you may be quick to comment on a screaming child who repeatedly smacks into you in a line, you may keep completely silent about a perfectly well behaved child who quietly waits next to his/her parent.
Even little compliments are often withheld. Sometimes because we are afraid of overstepping some social line.
While waiting in a rather long food line at the CNE this past August, an attractive woman hesitantly started talking to me. “I’m really sorry,” she began, “I wasn’t going to say anything, but I hope you don’t mind…I think you have really beautiful eyes.” She went on to say how she’d been debating with herself for most of the line on whether or not to say anything to me. I thanked her and told her I completely understood. I shared that I had grown up in the South and how complements were handed out a bit more freely there.
It was such a nice moment because, for one, who doesn’t like a compliment; and, for two, it was so nice to feel like this pretty lady looked at me and saw something lovely, rather than “fat”/preggo. It also, oddly was the first time that someone gave me a compliment and I immediately thought of Spawn. I hoped that whatever it was that made that woman comment on my eyes was something I passed on to Spawn.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my eyes. That certainly wasn’t the first compliment I’d ever gotten on them. I do think it was the first from a complete stranger who wasn’t a makeup artist, though. You see, my are a true hazel, complete with a tri-coloured iris. Near the pupil it’s a mahogany brown, then a lot of amber, with a ring of dark brown. Sometimes they turn more green than gold, but it depends on the light and my mood.
With MFH’s light green eyes and my hazel, I already had high hopes for Spawn’s eyes. Having that woman compliment me made me realize that whatever colour they turn out, they will be beautiful. My baby will be better than my hopes and dreams, because he/she will be real.
All this because one woman was brave enough to offer a compliment…
In keeping with that mindset, I read a post today that I think is absolutely lovely. It’s about telling someone they are a good mom. Maybe someone you know, maybe someone you don’t. Either way it’s about taking the time to just say good job. Not for amazingly heroic acts of motherhood, but for small, simple things. It’s about how those small, simple things can completely change a person’s day.
I encourage you to read it in full:
Tell a Friend: You Are a Good Mama | Raising Kvell.
***I’d like to add as a postscript here, that this doesn’t have to be exclusive to mamas. There are some pretty awesome Daddies out there that deserve their fair share of “good jobs,” as well…***