I've never been closer to my brother and sister than in the last 18 months that I've been a mom. When I became a mom, everything shifted perspective and I motherhood actually made me a better sibling than I had been before I had a daughter. While I have less time than ever before, my newfound perspective on what big things matter and when to let go of the smaller things.
My sister became a mom seven months after I did, and it was then that I realized we had never had so much in common growing up, other than the fact that we were growing up in the same family. We are very different, but we have more respect now for each other as we watch and help each other learn to be moms than we ever did before. If only I could have had half of that perspective when we were growing up and driving each other bananas.
Probably the most enjoyable improvement for my siblings seems to be that being a mom has forced me to chill out. I'm less uptight and more chilled out than I was growing up, or even in my pre-kid years, apparently. There's nothing like a backhanded compliment for your big sister to make you closer as siblings, right?
Since I'm not sure my brother and sister fully appreciate all the ways I've improved as a sibling in the last year and a half, here's the full list.
I Make Time
For several years, I lived abroad and could barely make time to chat with my siblings on the phone. It was the pre-iMessage era, so we weren't yet able to text when time zones aligned. Now that I'm a mom, I have less time but I know how important it is to make time for my siblings. It might seem trivial, but even just checking in or making sure I'm supporting them even though my life has gotten more hectic, can make all the difference.
I Value Quality Time
Even though I might not be able to hang out for hours on end, I value quality time with my siblings as much as I can get it. Both because I know they're going to be two of my closest friends forever, and because I want them to be a big part of my daughter's life as well.
I Forgive Past Sins
I'm More Respectful Of Their Time
With less time on my own hands, I'm much more respectful of their time and schedule. Sibling relationships can get strained when one becomes a mom, because the non-parent is sometimes expected to bend their schedule. I try (when I can, of course) to work with their schedule and not always demand that we spend time together at my house while the baby's napping.
I Ignore (Some) Of Their Crap
In addition to forgiving things in the past, motherhood has made it all the more clear that I can ignore some of their crap; whether it's a lifestyle choice or an annoying habit. Being a mom means you can't escape the fact that everyone has their own annoying quirks, so we all deserve a little leeway and grace.
I Can Help Them Understand (And Appreciate) Our Parents
Sometimes it takes becoming a parent to understand our own parents. My siblings weren't yet parents when I became a mom, so I was able to help us all understand our parents and their parenting decisions a little better (Even if that just means we can all agree that parents are downright looney sometimes).
I've Chilled Out
Maybe it's the general sleep deprivation, but I'm goofier and more chilled out as a mom than I used to be. According to my siblings, this is making me a heck of a lot more fun to be around. Backwards compliment much?
I'm More Patient
Some days I feel like I've run out of all my patience reserves for the rest of the decade. However, in reality I know a mom has about a ton more patience than normal humans. Even when the tiny human is trying my last nerve, I still have more patience to give to my siblings than I ever did before.
So, dear siblings, you're welcome.