The maternity leave in Denmark is outrageous. Of course, I’m American so I can’t fathom that mothers in Denmark get around 9 MONTHS of maternity leave. (I can’t give all the specifics, perhaps a Dane can respond with the low down.) I got 16 weeks paid maternity leave by the government (for me and my husband to share) and most Danes were apologetic with how little I got.
We, however, were fired up!
Since most mothers will be on maternity leave for up to approximately 9 months, the local health nurse will organize a mother’s group for moms with newborn babies. It is women who live in a common area who have given birth within a few months of each other. It is up to the women to decide how often they meet and what they do, but the idea is to be together and support one another through the grand adventure of motherhood.
Some mother’s groups stay in contact for years. I have some friends that have know each other since their mother’s “mother group”! Crazy!
My experience was a little different. Because I’m a foreigner, they put me with other foreigners. Now, I don’t have anything against other foreigners but all of us were very new to this concept and it didn’t work out so well for us. In fact, our group disbanded 😦 But I came up with the idea to start my own “mother’s group” with the current “baby boom” in our church. Instead of focusing on the babies development and progress, I wanted our group to be forward thinking and focusing on the type of character we would like to help our kids to have. Also to discuss spiritual aspects of motherhood and how we can see God through this new era of life.
We meet every other Friday for a couple of hours. We bring our babies, eat snacks and talk about motherhood. Here are the questions we answered from our last discussion and the scripture we looked at. It’s short and simple because what new mother can hold a lot of information? And it’s flexible enough that if one of our little loves is having a hard time, we can still get the main point from the discussion.
I get all my inspiration thus far from “Raising Great Kids” by Cloud and Townsend.
Intro question: How have you experienced a deeper love since being a mother?
Reflect on the following scripture:
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Ephesians 5:16
As mothers we don’t want to be concerned with raising good kids, but raising kids of good character. It’s one thing to have a child who obeys while you are around, it’s another to teach a child to have good character even if no one is looking. In the next following weeks we will look at the following character traits:
-Attachment: the ability to form relationships.
– Responsibility: the ability to take ownership of their life.
– Reality: the ability to accept the negatives of the real world.
– Competence: the ability to develop their gifts and talents.
– Conscience: the ability to have an internal sense of right and wrong.
– Worship: the ability to recognize that God loves them.
What are some good character traits you have developed from your parents?
Who do you think is responsible for your child’s maturity and readiness for the world?
What are some character qualities you would like to see your child develop?
Remember that children are sponges, especially in the early years! Let’s make the most of every opportunity we have with our kids!