Pat Smith, minister, philanthropist, author, and mother of Jasmine, 20, EJ, 14, Skylar, 13, and Elijah, 5.
“All moms need to be prepared for their kids’ hormones and emotions. Kids will say mean things that will hurt your feelings. Don’t take it personal, but don’t let them get away with it either. It’s important to remember you are the parent and they are the child. Before they get too busy, don’t forget to enjoy them. Have fun! Laugh, sit around together as a family, play games, watch a movie, enjoy a meal. Let them know how much their time with you is valued. Also, remember that they are going to go through stuff. Allow them to go through the journey and don’t try to rescue them from everything. Those are the moments that God can use to really make them great. The best advice I can offer a mom of a teenager is to find your own personal passion and engage. Don’t let their passions consume your own passions. It’s important to have other significant relationships in your life that give you fulfillment: husbands, family, girlfriends, you need other important relationships. Lastly, don’t forget to treasure you. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in their lives and forget about yourself.”