Happy Mother’s Day to Me: A look in the (rearview) mirror

This guest post is by Anna Godby, writer who also blogs about gardening with your family at Tiny Trowelers. In this Happy Mother’s Day to Me series, mothers are celebrating themselves for the dedicated, loving, tireless mamas they are—and the important lessons we sometimes learn when peeking into the rearview mirror. Check out all the posts in the series!


 

Snowflake after snowflake lands on the windshield. It’s impossible to see more than a few feet ahead of my parents’ Chevy Astro, ice covering everything in the darkness.  Yet somehow, I knew we would get home safely. After all, my dad was driving so I knew we would be fine and fell asleep.

Fast forward two decades, and I’m now the one clutching the wheel in terror as the snow refuses to let up and I have no idea where the lanes are. My heart is pounding as I envision a hundred ways for us to go off the road and wreck. Each time the radio cuts in with a weather and traffic update I clench my teeth in fear, especially for my two young children in the backseat.

I steal a glance in the rearview mirror to find them both sound asleep, snuggled in their car seats. Suddenly, a warm feeling of relief passes through me as I realize that my children put their blind faith in me just like I did with my own parents all those years ago. We made it home safe and sound.

Mother's Day driving home Read more

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: Mom Resume

This guest post by Laura Starner, who shares her uplifting and triumphant story of surviving cancer at Laura’s Journey of Hope, is part of a series called Happy Mother’s Day to Me. In it, mothers are celebrating themselves for the dedicated, loving, tireless mamas they are. Chances are, if you’re a mother, you have an impressive—and long—resume, too. Check out all the posts in the series!


Mom Resume Mother's Day

As moms, we usually don’t take time to celebrate ourselves because we don’t really feel like we’ve accomplished anything.  So today I celebrate my accomplishments as a mom and Mimi (Grandma).  I want to encourage others by writing about my resume as a mom/Mimi.

My daughters are 28 and 24 years old. I have three grandchildren ages five and under and a new addition on the way.

Here is my Mom/Mimi Resume. Read more

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: You made it

This guest post is by Chanler Jeffers, who blogs with the belief we all can make a difference in the world around us. She dishes up inspiration and food for thought at TeamJeffers.com. In this Happy Mother’s Day to Me series, mothers are celebrating themselves for the dedicated, loving, tireless mamas they are. Check out all the posts in the series!


 

Happy Mother's Day You Made ItHello, Beautiful—

Look at you.

You made it. Twenty-one years have passed, and somehow you made it.

Your tiny baby is now a beautiful young woman, despite everything that came in between.  Who knew, starting out, how extraordinarily difficult this journey would be? Certainly not you, because life spun you a different story than what you’d written for yourself, didn’t it?

Remember at the beginning—the discomfort as your tiny baby grew inside of you? How her feet and arms and head pushed bits and pieces of you aside that you never even knew existed? Remember how it felt she was not only crowding your body, but your very soul, as she slowly came to exist? Remember how you had to shift at night, to try and get some rest? And remember all those silly worries you had? That your baby would be ugly? Physically ugly? Remember that one? Remember how terrible it made you feel to admit that, because you knew how shallow it made you seem? You were still worried, though—weren’t you?

And remember those first labor pains? They made perfect sense somehow, but they were still so foreign. And the birth. Merciful God… how do we endure that as women? That quiet nod, and tight smile—you can always tell when a woman has given birth as she faces a newly pregnant woman, can’t she? As if to say, “Just wait, hon. You have no idea, but you’ll be okay. We all have to do it.”

Then came the difficulties no one tells you about. The having to discipline, even when you’re exhausted and unsure. The constant demands, the constant wondering if you’re doing the right thing, the constant worry that your child will end up a failure because of something you have or haven’t known how to do.

But guess what? You made it, Beautiful. She’s launched.

And even though her life wasn’t perfect, and absolutely nothing at all turned out the way you wanted, or hoped or expected on that long-ago day you brought her home from the hospital, you did it. Read more

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: Then and now

This guest post is by Sandra N. Peoples, a mom of four and an entrepreneur. She blogs about growing your business at SandraNPeoples.com. Her poem, here, explores the evolution we undergo when becoming mothers. In this Happy Mother’s Day to Me series, Sandra and other mothers are celebrating themselves for the dedicated, loving, tireless mamas they are. Check out all the posts in the series!


Then and Now

If you had asked me during my high school years if I ever wanted kids,

my answer would have been a swift and powerful, “No.”

Now, I can’t imagine my life without my kids:

My energy-filled toddler twins who keep me on my toes,

my zesty tween who loves being “momma’s helper,”

and my creative and inspirational teen who never fails to remind me of how much she admires me.

My kids are my joy, and I love them. Read more

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: Dear Mommy

This guest post is by Katie Karambelas, a fiction writer earning her MFA and a single mom. She blogs about adventure, motherhood and dating in the 21st century at Writing & Wanderlust. In this Happy Mother’s Day to Me series, mothers are celebrating themselves for the dedicated, loving, tireless mamas they are. Check out all the posts in the series!


 

Happy Mother's Day Dear Mommy
Dear Mommy: I love you! Photo by AE Photography

Dear Mommy,

I see you, Mommy. I see you trying not to cry because you are too distracted juggling work and school and you forget to flip my grilled cheese before it turns black. You scrape the burnt part into the sink and flip it over on my plate so I won’t notice.

I hear you, Mommy. I hear you tell me things that I need to hear. I hear you say “I love you” and “I’m so proud of you” and they mean so much to me. I hear the happiness in your voice when you say these things to me.

I see you, Mommy. I see you lifting weights at the gym, trying to get stronger on the outside, even when you don’t feel strong on the inside. I watch Mickey Mouse on my DVD player but I look up every few seconds and I see the sweat dripping, your hair falling out of the too-loose ponytail holder.

I hear you, Mommy. I hear the happiness in your voice when you talk to me about traveling, and I believe you when you tell me that we will go to Paris and I’ll get to see the Eiffel Tower like I’ve been asking since I was only two years old.  Read more

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: A series to celebrate ourselves

Happy Mother’s Day! (Well, almost.) This Mother’s Day on my blog, I want to do a little something different.

Happy Mother's Day to meFor the holiday, your kids and your partner might gift you a homemade card, a bouquet, a special breakfast or maybe even a much-deserved morning to sleep in. That’s totally legit. Syrup-sticky kisses in bed and hand-glued art are some of the best perks of motherhood.

But waiting for the gratitude—especially on just one day a year—isn’t enough. That’s why in the two weeks leading up to Mother’s Day this year, I’ll be featuring the stories of mothers writing themselves a message.

Too often, we moms fill the internet and our heads with self-doubt and self-criticism. That’s why this Mother’s Day, I want to flood my tiny corner of the web with mothers celebrating ourselves.

In these guest posts, you’ll hear from moms who walk slowly alongside toddlers and shuttle kids to out-of-state sports tournaments. You’ll hear from moms who kiss boo boos and battle cancer. You’ll hear from moms who delight in the everyday joys of motherhood and slog through the hard times.

These stories are authentic. And they might ring true for you, too.

I hope you join me in the coming weeks to read these Mother’s Day posts. And I hope you’ll share in the comments why you appreciate yourself this Mother’s Day.

It’s time to celebrate ourselves. Are you in?

Tiny giants

This week something crazy happened:

My girls got big.

Big firsts

Kiwi ate her first food. (No, I’m not counting the snow.) She’s acted ready for weeks now, but I just hadn’t gotten around to it, and I wasn’t keen on the possibility of messing up her sleep, reflux and sensitive stomach even more. But this week we made it happen.

Baby's first food - Ten Thousand Hour Mama
“Mom, are we ready to eat yet?”

I had planned on pureeing sweet potatoes, as I did for Peeper’s first food almost exactly two years earlier, but I didn’t manage to cook them. So I just mashed up a banana with a fork, swirled in some breastmilk and called it good.

(Isn’t that funny how a baby’s first food is such a big deal with your first kid, and with the second one, not so much?)

Kiwi seemed more confused by the banana than anything, but she didn’t hate it! She had several bites and Peeper even fed her a few. And when Kiwi took a bite, Peeper clapped and cheered! It’ll be fun to continue to offer foods and witness her palate—and appetite—expand. Who knows, maybe Kiwi’s culinary adventures will even inspire Peeper to eat more (though I’m not holding my breath).

Big girl in a big bed

Peeper also met a milestone: She transitioned to her big girl bed.

Big girl bed - Ten Thousand Hour Mama Read more