Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Happy Face for Mommy

Yanthy’s teacher/occupational therapist explained to him a few weeks ago that he will get happy faces if he obeys the house rules set by her during their sessions. If he obeys them all throughout their one hour session and every time they have an activity, he can get as many as five happy faces. If he violates any of their house rules even with warnings from his teacher/therapist, he gets a sad face. To check if he understood what she has explained, she asked Yanthy again why he should obey the house rules. Yanthy said that he will get a happy face every time he obeys the house rules. Moreover, he said that he wants to get happy faces so that Mommy would be happy. His teacher/therapist shared this with me after their session. I was so touched.

Motherhood and parenting can be very demanding and challenging every now and then. I sometimes feel like I’m a broken record that keeps on repeating my instructions and reminders. But there are days like this when my heart jumps for joy because of something sweet or wonderful that my little boy has said or done. It’s true that he’s not always disciplined and lovable especially when he doesn’t listen to me even after I have repeatedly asked him to do something or to refrain from doing something. But that afternoon, I was content to know that his motivation for doing well in his sessions and obeying the house rules set by his teacher/therapist was to make me happy.

I was reminded of God’s patience and loving kindness. I admit that I’m not always obedient. Many times, I sin and make mistakes even though I try my best to live a holy and righteous life. And every time I go to confession or come before God in prayer, God assures me that it’s alright. He encourages me to keep on trying and to just keep on doing what is right in His sight. That too, is enough to make Him happy.

“Get up, get over it, get going.” That’s the fifteenth step in Failing Forward according to Dr. John Maxwell in his book Failing Forward which Yanthy handed to me as I was about to finish writing this article. It’s as if God was using him to tell me that mistakes are a part of our lives and how we deal with them is what makes a big difference. Dr. Maxwell’s title for his fifteenth chapter of the book is also very encouraging. It says, “It’s what you do after you get back up that counts.” Yes, it’s inevitable that we make mistakes every now and then. But do we just sulk and stay where we made a mistake? We need to persevere and keep on trying, keep on learning until we overcome our weaknesses.

So today, with these thoughts and insights in mind, I choose to persevere and start over. It’s a brand new day. It’s a beautiful morning! And as Dr. Maxwell puts it, I will turn my mistakes into stepping stones for success, be it as a wife, mother, writer, whatever! I know that like St. Paul, as I run the race with perseverance, I will one day gain an everlasting crown. On that day, I will have the happiest face which is a reflection of the Father’s happy face. Thank you, Yanthy, once more for the inspiration.


  1. hello teresa.

    i am akel.

    my mother gave me your article for good house keeping magazine last december 2011. like you i am also battling for pcos and we really want to have a baby.

    can you send me an email at akeldotalixatgmaildotcom?

    please really need help

    thanks a lot

    1. Hi! I hope you received the email I sent you regarding my experiece with pcos.