Yesterday the 5 Things Story of Roberta Pepin was highlighted, giving us a breath of fresh air in this complicated world of parenting. Love your kids, take care of them, teach and pray for them. Live well.
Today Roberta's daughter, Jana Pepin Emerson, 4th child of 10 and 1 of only 2 girls, shares her 5 Things she's glad her mom did while raising her. (surprise mom!)
From Jana, 5 things I'm glad Mom did….
1. Always pointed us to the Lord. I remember so many times when I was struggling with making a decision, was anxious or concerned about a relationship, my mom would encourage me to pray about it and seek God for my answer. She would say “Why don’t you take some time and do some praying about it”. Probably even more importantly, she lived her life that way. She would “go away” every once in a while to pray and re-charge herself. I can still picture her feeding a baby (because there were a lot of those in my family!) and her Bible would be open and she would be reading or praying while she was nursing.
2. My mom was (and still is) an AMAZING listener. I honestly can NEVER remember a time when my mom was too busy to listen to something I had to say. She never made me feel as though what I had to say wasn’t important or that she didn’t care. She was really good about listening and not telling me what to do but instead letting me talk through what I was dealing with and not trying to “control” or “solve” the issue. We would often tease my mom about her friendships. She has always had some close friendships with women who seem to do much of the talking and I attribute this to my mom’s amazing listening skills. She is a person who is content just listening and people are very drawn to that.
3. Gave unconditional love. I have always felt as though my mom was my biggest fan! As the mother of ten children, she was able to find the time to make each one of us feel as though we were her favorite! She is one of the very few people in my life where I feel like I can be my true self with, always. I can say anything to her and know that she will never think any less of me or judge me in that moment. She truly knows my heart and I feel extremely safe with her. I know that I have not always been the easiest person to love and forgive but my mom has always been there for me and has been a constant support.
4. Modeled the importance of thinking of others. My mom is one of those people who has always put others needs before her own. Regardless of her own daily struggles, she has always modeled the importance of putting her children, husband, and others before herself. Looking back now, as an adult and parent, I think about the challenges that my parents faced on a daily basis when raising ten children. At the time, we were all protected and had very little knowledge of the obstacles that were before them. My mom has always been gracious and kind to those around her. I do not think that it is a coincidence that all ten of us children place high value on helping others, whether that is through choosing a “helping” profession or incorporating mission work into our lives.
5. Was a strong encourager. My mom is also one of the most positive people I have ever met. She is an eternal optimist. She has always had a way of finding the good in people, even when they don’t deserve it. There have been many times in my life where I have felt hopeless or really frustrated with a situation and I know that by talking with my mom, she will be able to encourage me and remind me that God has a plan. I truly believe the success of her children is attributed to her constant support and encouragement.
Thank you Jana for giving us your perspective, looking back on life, and sharing what felt most important, as the daughter. Tomorrow we get to hear from daughter-in-law Scarlet, who was happy to share, as she is "still benefitting daily" from Roberta's parenting. Stay tuned!