A Mother’s Legacy

Have you ever wondered what sort of legacy you’ll leave behind in this world? I mean… what will your friends say about you once you’re gone? What about your children’s teachers? Your neighbors? Your spouse? Your children?

What will they say about you… not only as a person or a friend or a spouse… but as a mother?

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. We happen to live in a pretty well-to-do neighborhood. My children attend school at the top rated school in the district. On more than one occasion I’ve gone to school to help in the classroom or whatever… and I’ve noticed that the moms are really put together. They have gorgeous highlights in their hair. Their Juicy Couture tracksuits are free of peanut butter stains. Their nails are perfectly manicured and their cars… well that’s a different story.

I see these moms at school and think that they must be the most amazing mothers in the world. They flash their PTA mom smiles at each other and then I walk in. They look me over in my gym clothes… (I only have so much free time ya know) I actually do have a peanut butter stain on my shirt and there’s dirt under my nails. My hair, on these days, is usually in a pony tail. I’m sure I didn’t brush it because I was too busy running out of the house… trying not to be late for school.

For a moment… their stares make me feel like I’m doing it wrong. They make me feel like I’m not an amazing mom because I’m not sparkled and polished at 8am. But then I realize… I’m doing it just right.

I realize that when my friends and neighbors remember me… they will remember that I was always running late, but it was because I took one more minute to let Allison try and tie her own shoes. They might remember that somewhere on my gym shirt there’s a peanut butter stain because I made my kid’s lunches myself… with handwritten love notes on their napkins. My friends and neighbors could remember that I had dirt under my nails… but it’s only because I was making mud pies in the backyard on a rainy day with the kids.

Sure… my legacy will have it’s missteps and shortcomings… but in the end…

I’m a mom and I might not be living up to the standards of some… but am truly living.

I’d love to hear what your legacy will be like… share with me in the comments below and also take a moment to stop by the Million Moms Challenge forum and see what challenges other moms are facing. Much love.


  1. Cassandra says:

    That’s very sweet, Kelly–and true! Your patience with your kids seems unlimited. And clearly, it takes quite a compassionate, intuitive woman to raise such smart, beautiful, well-mannered children. p.s. I know all about which laundry products help get peanut butter out of your clothes. Bring it over.

  2. Kelly says:

    You are truly my friend. xo

  3. Susan Case says:

    I hope my legacy will be that I promoted learning and play for children and that I helped special needs people. I was only blessed with one daughter (infertility problems) but I love her dearly even though she is developmentally delayed and has a seizure disorder. She inspired me to return to school to become a Sp. Ed. teacher – then a kindergarten teacher. We are still able to share the fun of childhood as she is still like a child even though twenty-one. We visit zoos, parks, and explore nature trying to make it a better place. Having dirt under your fingernails and PB stains means you are living and loving your children and our world. Good for you. Your children are lucky because you’ve made motherhood a priority.

  4. Jacque says:

    I hope my children remember how much I love and cared for them and though they may not always agree(maybe around the time they are teenagers)that I did what was best for them.
    I teach my children to give back, to help and to always be grateful for what they have because there are people out there who do not.