I recently realized that I am a MUCH better and happier mother today than I was eight years ago when I was inducted into motherhood. Of course I am eight years older too, so there’s a certain level of maturity that has happened naturally. But I also think that having a lot of kids has redefined my limits of sanity, humbled me beyond comprehension, adjusted my sense of perfection, and filled me with immeasurable levels of humility, pride and grace.
People have told me that I appear too calm for someone who has four boys – but truth be told, watching my kids run around like wild banshees just sucks the life and energy right out of me, giving me the appearance of someone who is at peace with their surroundings. The secret is that most of the time I am just too physically exhausted to wave the white flag… I have put together a list of 30 thruths about motherhood: lessons I have learned after becoming a mother to a small village of boys (aka: having A LOT of kids).
1. Pick your battles: letting a toddler “win” when no one is looking is like it never happened.
2. Dusty baseboards don’t make you a bad mother.
3. “I love you” is as important as “please” and “thank you.”
4. Sometimes mommy has a meltdown – or two.
5. Organizing toys is overrated.
6. Outfits don’t have to match each other, the season, or the siblings’.
7. The first day of school is hardest on mommy.
8. Sometimes there is actually good food to eat off the floor.
9. Not every cold turns into heart failure.
10. Birthday parties for the entire class don’t have to be an annual event.
11. Nipples are NOT supposed to bleed – call a lactation consultant.
12. Diaper blowouts don’t happen with cloth diapers – wish I had known this sooner.
13. Sending the same apple in the lunch box for a week is still considered offering a balanced meal.
14. Learning sight words is a matter of maturity, so have fun with it and stop worrying – they will catch on.
15. Mommy is beautiful even if her arms are still moving 3 minutes after she stops waving.
16. Hand-me-downs are like the gift that keeps on giving.
17. You won’t have to read “Dora Goes to the Dentist” 17 times at bedtime when they are 13 years old, or even 8 years old, so enjoy it now!
18. Get your umbilical hernia repaired if the baby gets confused and latches onto it more than once.
19. Sometimes you are late for work because you couldn’t figuring out how to “uncut” the last waffle in the house.
20. The kids’ teeth won’t fall out if you forget to brush them one night – or even two nights!
21. Keep their hair short – you won’t have to brush or style it unless it’s picture day.
22. A failed bedtime routine today does not equal a lifetime of bad sleep habits.
23. Cuddling is more important than being on time – always.
24. French fries are considered a vegetable, and so is ketchup, by the way.
25. The baby is clean if the toe fuzz and belly button lint has been removed.
26. “Happy Meals” refer to the mother who doesn’t have to do dishes!
27. Halloween candy is community property after the kids are in bed.
28. A daddy who vacuums and wrestles with his kids is eye candy for mommy.
29. Don’t buy Christmas presents early! You either use them as bribes in November, or you forget you have them and then use them as bribes in January!
30. They are only needy for what seems like “the blink of an eye”, so give them what they want – in abundance: LOVE and HUGS!
How are you a better/ happier mother today than when you first started this career path of motherhood?
Here’s another list of parenting thruths: “Attachment Parenting is “Lazy” Parenting!”