Happy Mother’s Day

To the other moms of the world:

Happy Mother’s Day!

We spend so much time putting our children first, it’s nice to take one day to allow ourselves to be a little selfish. Today is about you. Get that massage. Buy that thing at the mall that you’ve had your eye for months but couldn’t justify a reason to purchase it. Open up a bottle of wine. Take a nice long bath with candles and your favorite book while someone else watches your kid(s). Order take-out and binge on those shows you need to catch up on. Go take a nap. Do whatever the hell you want because you’ve earned it.

You’re beautiful and amazing and sometimes, you’re a lot stronger than you give yourself credit for. When things are tough, remember that there’s always light at the end of the tunnel and your children will never stop loving you. Keep being you. You’re a great mother.

To all the moms out there – young moms, older moms, new moms, moms who have lost their children, future moms who are struggling to conceive – happy Mother’s Day! You are awesome. You are beautiful. You are loved. Pamper yourself, relax today, take a little time to remember how great you are, and never forget how much your children love you.

The Days Are Long, The Years Are Short

“The days are long but the years are short.” I have no idea where I heard this once, but it’s definitely fitting when it comes to parenthood. My days are often filled with tantrums and tears; it’s not a typical day without at least one complete meltdown. Some days are a real struggle, if I’m being totally honest, and seem to just go on and on and on and… you get the idea. This last year has really just flown by, though, and it makes me sad that we’ve officially entered the “toddler” stage. My baby is not such a baby anymore.

When you become a parent, you really have to take a step back and stop rushing things. During all the tantrums, you have to remind yourself that this, too, shall pass, and before you know it, your child will be another year older.

Of course, my days aren’t totally filled with tears. My days are also filled with love and laughter; between the tantrums, we cuddle and we play on the floor together and we have regular dance parties in front of the television. She’s my sun, moon, and stars, my pride and joy, my reason for living, my greatest accomplishment, my happiness, my inspiration. She is the little love of my life, and she’s a year old already.

A couple of days ago, a good friend of mine informed me that her water broke (three weeks early!) and she was looking at having her baby soon. I began to cry, thinking that exactly one year prior, I was preparing for the arrival of my own bundle of joy. The realization of just how quickly these twelve months have gone finally hit me, and I was a wreck.

When R’s birthday finally rolled around yesterday, though, I was happy – excited, even. I’m entering a new stage of parenthood. It’s terrifying, but it’s exciting!

I had a whole party planned out: it was going to be a winter theme, with pretty blue cupcakes and all sorts of different snacks. The night before, we went out and bought all our supplies and I prepped several pounds of vegetables, made two different kinds of dip, assembled a ton of pepperoni pinwheels that would be cut in the morning, baked forty-two cupcakes, and set our table up. In the morning, I threw some hot dogs into the crockpot with barbecue sauce. We were ready for a party, and we were expecting around twenty or twenty-five people to show. It was my very first time hosting a party like that and I was really excited to have people over.

And then… everyone canceled. Mother Nature seemed to have her own ideas about the day, and snow had made the roads difficult to drive on. Our guest list drastically decreased to just two people. All the food, all the effort, all the time I had put into getting things ready felt wasted. What was the point?

To say that I was upset would be an understatement. I had high hopes for R’s first birthday party to be a total success, and instead, it felt like a failure. Many tears were shed that morning.

Despite my disappointment, I did have a good day, and most importantly, so did R. She got to see her maimeo and Aunt Kristin and she really did seem to have a blast. She danced, we all ate cake, we handed out presents, and spent some time together. R got a cool new bath toy, an adorable stuffed dog, an AquaDoodle mat, and a Little People amusement park structure. She had such a great time, and so did her father and I. We have snack food up to our eyeballs, but at least we won’t go hungry this week, I guess. It wasn’t a perfect party, but we enjoyed ourselves.

If there are anymore children in our future, I’m hoping none of them will be winter babies. I don’t think I could take another disappointing party. I’m not even sure I want to host another party again anyway.

At least we had a good time. That’s all that really matters.

I’m So Thankful for This Life

I have the worst baby fever. Having a baby only seemed to fuel it. I have to keep reminding myself that I need to live in the moment, because my daughter’s going to grow up before my eyes; it’s sad to think that in just two months, she’ll be a year old. I can’t believe how quickly this year has gone.

To our families, if you’re reading this, don’t worry; we will not be having anymore children anytime in the near future.

Being a mother has shown me a love I have never experienced before. My daughter is my world, and I’ve never loved someone so deeply, and so completely, as I love her. It’s strange how your world view seems to change when you start a family. Before I got pregnant, all I was concerned about was myself, really. Of course, there were people I cared about, but at the end of the day, it was always about what was good for me. Then, I became a mom, and all I want to do is make sure that I do everything right for her. I don’t care about myself anymore. It’s like a switch got flipped the moment I gave birth and held her in my arms for the first time.

This time of year is about being thankful for what we have. This is not the life I envisioned myself having, but I couldn’t imagine it being any other way. I’m so thankful to have my little family – my boyfriend and my daughter – and to have a job that allows me to stay home with her and still bring in an income. I’m thankful for the support I had during my pregnancy and after. I’m thankful for my mom, my boyfriend’s family, my grandparents, who have all helped me along the way in figuring out what kind of a mom I want to be. I’m thankful for the internet, which has helped me connect with so many wonderful moms whose opinions and friendship I value. I’m thankful for Thanksgiving, when I will get to reunite with all of the people I care about most.

I’m thankful for my life. It’s not always easy, but it’s so worth it.