15 Things Moms Can Agree On (Hopefully) (Well, Maybe?)

This post was inspired by a post from treehugger.com which highlighted 26 Things We Can All Agree On. After I read it, I began contemplating the subject of motherhood with its diverse outlooks, beliefs, and countless ways we’ve amassed to raise our children. Aside from our individualities, are there any fundamental, concrete principles that all mothers can agree on? I hope so! Let’s face it, we all have an opinion, but at the end of the day what binds us is we all answer to that word, “Mom.” Or Mommy or Mama or Mom Mom Mom Mom Mom! or Madre or Mamacita or Ma or…well you catch my drift.

Spit-up, throw-up, early mornings, late nights. Infants, toddlers, teenagers. Just when we think we have it all figured out, motherhood throws us another damn curve ball. Well at least she keeps us on our toes. I for one am up for the challenge. You?

15 Things All Moms Can Agree On (Hopefully) (Well, Maybe?):

1. Motherhood is tough. This ongoing journey of ups and downs and winding roads is ever-changing and ever-challenging. Motherhood is an enormous task which reaps enormous rewards.

2. LOVE is all you need. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. I. LOVE. YOU. Tell them. Show them. Repeatedly. Again and Again and Again.

3. Mistakes are inevitable. They happen. More often than not. Let’s recognize the ones we’ve made and look to a future of not repeating them.

4. Every child is different. But wait a minute, my first baby slept through night no problem. Uh huh. Doesn’t mean a thing. The sooner we realize that not all kids are the same, the better off we’ll be. Agree?

5. Mom Guilt. We all have it. We all recognize it. We all need to get over it and stop putting so much undue stress and pressure on ourselves. What’s the deal with us doing that anyways? Oh right, mom guilt.

6. Children are our teachers. There is so much we can discover about ourselves from our children. We just need to take the time slow down and learn the lessons. Patience, tolerance, spirit, hope, passion, honesty, excitement, acceptance…

7. Time goes by too fast. Days are long, but the years are short. A first-born will soon be taking a first step. Savor every moment. Yes, even that moment when the baby is crying incessantly and the toddler is yanking on your leg telling you that she just flushed your keys down the potty. Okay, well not every moment.

8. Self-confidence – We need it, desperately. It’s right there inside you. Find it. NOW.

9. Mother’s change the world. We are raising future generations. This requires no further explanation. 

10. We are all in this together. Although we are highly diverse in appearance and culture, our instincts at the core virtually remain the same. To teach, to nurture, to bring up compassionate, hard-working, intelligent, healthy, responsible human beings that contribute something positive to society. Not too much to ask for, right? If you’re doubt, please refer to #8.

11. A Step-by-Step Guide to Motherhood DOES NOT exist. In motherhood we learn from that thing called EXPERIENCE.

12. We CAN NOT please everyone. Not even going to try to.

13. Sleep is a necessity. For mom. For dad. For kids. For sanity.

14. Taking a [hot/cold] shower may equate to a week-long vacation. I was going to attribute this one to new moms especially, but I think all mothers can agree that five minutes in the shower has the ability to renew and recharge us – even if we have ‘mommy brain’ and think we can hear someone calling our name the entire time.

15. Balance is something we all strive for. On the outside. On the inside. Within our family, within our friendships, within our careers, within ourselves.

“Motherhood brings as much joy as ever…Nothing else ever will make you as happy or as sad, as proud or as tired, for nothing is quite as hard as helping a person develop her (his) own individuality especially while you struggle to keep your own.” – Marguerite Kelly and Elia Parsons

Have more to add? Please do so below! ♥

This post was re-blogged from Mommy OM archives 2012–One of my favorites 🙂

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Giving Thanks

May you all have a very blessed Thanksgiving.

May the joy of the holiday season be with your family.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being the inspiration, the support, and the unity in motherhood we so desperately need.

Much love mamas!

Shine on! ☀

in the moment

Be in the moment.

Be in the moment.

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

Hold on to it.

Mommeeeeeeeeeee!!!

Hold on to it.

Mommeeeeeeeeeee!!!

and….done.

Oh yes! A record ten seconds to clear my head!

Live in the moment.  We hear this saying all the time in some form or another.  Whether it be in a yoga class, philosophy book, or from the older lady at Target who is keen on observing our primo mommying adventures.  But what does it really mean to us as mothers?  Frankly, I find it extremely hard to “be” in the moment as a mom.  I am constantly on the go, go, go.  With housework and work work  and play dates and nap time and bedtime and lunch time and freak-out time (the kids, not me—OK, me too!), there never seems like enough time in the day to actually exist in the moment.  As a mother to small children, I feel like I am constantly battling.  I’m battling laundry and dishes and dirty floors and messy bedrooms and scraped knees and melt-downs.  All the while leaving me exhausted and short-tempered, craving a piece of chocolate cake and a shower.

To revel in a clear mind and a calm body, it feels foreign to most.  And it shouldn’t.  Maybe the definition of living in the moment has everything to do with the jumbled and discombobulated life I do live and nothing to do with the life I perceive it to represent.  Not yearning for the past when I was flying solo or a future that holds the next best thing to make my life easier.  The clean house that I strive for or the live-in nanny that I will never have, but dream about often.  Maybe if I stopped fighting the daily chores and the sleepless nights, my mind would awaken to the revelation that, YES! this is my moment.  Every day with my children and my husband.  The good, the bad, the pee all over the bathroom, they all lead me to me.

one thousand and one

As moms, we are everything to our children. They see us as the smartest, the funniest, the nicest, the prettiest, the cuddliest, the oldest, the fastest, the strongest. Meeting their day-to-day expectations of us can be hard and daunting sometimes, but it can also be quite simple, really.

This is part of a conversation I had with my three-year-old little boy the other day:

No honey. Besides the fact that dinosaurs don’t live here anymore, I’m pretty sure we couldn’t fit one in our living room or in our kitchen for that matter. They are kinda big.

thanks kiddo.

lisa

sleep baby sleep

At 2:49am, I was awakened by my three-year-old crying. I ran to his room and found him sitting up in bed asking for his Lightning McQueen car. I’m sure he was dreaming because all I did was hush him a bit, hold him for a few minutes, and cuddle him (and myself) back to sleep. At 4:15am, I awoke in his bed (make that partially in his bed since the whole right side of my body was hanging off the edge), my neck cranked, my body freezing (he stole all the covers), and my left arm stuck underneath his pillow. I tried to gently free my arm without waking him so I could quietly head for the door and back to my own room. Success! Well sort of.

In a sleepy stupor, I was making my way down the hallway to my bedroom only to be met by my five-year-old doing the pee pee dance. I escorted her to the bathroom and then to her bedroom, tucked her back in and kissed her goodnight. Checked the clock (4:27am) and plopped my body back into my own bed. Oh good, the husband didn’t hear a thing. He is sleeping soundly. I’m so glad the kids didn’t wake him. Sigh.

If kids sleeping through the night is any indication of parenting success, I am a complete and utter failure. I’m not saying we’re up every night, but we’re definitely not where I’d like to be in the “Please Sleep Through the Night Challenge.” And my kids are three and five!

So when do babies start sleeping fully through the night?

I believe there is no set age for which a baby should be sleeping through the night. In fact, to me it sounds almost illogical that we as a society have put these demands on ourselves to “train” our children to sleep when really we have little control over the outcome. Yes, when they’re young we can make sure they are fed and changed. We can develop a night time routine of bathing and rocking to sooth and calm them. We can make sure they are warm enough or cool enough by dressing them appropriately. We can accept teething for what it is- a nightmarish disaster in terms of ruining the months of hard work we just put in!! And when they’re a wee bit older, we can make sure they get plenty of exercise during the day. We can continue to give them a warm bath and start reading them books before bed.

But the bottom line remains: All kids are different. All families are different. Some are breast feeding, some are bottle feeding. Some are co-sleeping, some are crib sleeping. The sleep/wake development of children is more nature than nurture. Personally, my kids have never been great sleepers. I used to compare myself to other moms, but no more. I have found that for some reason we take pride in having a “good” baby who quickly takes to sleeping through the night. The pediatrician congratulates you, society congratulates you. Yet we feel shame if our child is not. Apparently because they haven’t conformed to the “newborn baby rule book.” The pediatrician is sometimes quick to judge and others often express opinions about what you may be doing wrong.

Unless there is an underlying medical reason your child is not sleeping through the night, there is no need to worry. Do the best you can to accommodate the needs of your baby and your family. If you know you’re kids aren’t great sleepers, go to bed an hour earlier each night or try and sneak in a nap during the day (if possible).

And if tonight, I find myself semi-conscious, wandering the halls of my home at 2:00am with one kid in my arms and one by the hand- I’m beelining it back to my bedroom and telling the hubby it’s his turn. It’s only fair.

dr. lisa