I slowly stepped out of my hot bubble bath, put on my pajamas, finished my decaf green tea, and set my alarm for 6am. Tomorrow is going to be a big day I thought. My first born will be starting first grade at a new school and riding the bus for the first time. What? Unreal. Most people will now think, “Where did the time go?” Thoughts come racing in. Ultimately, we want to feel confident that we made every second count.
It is now 6:30 am, the first day of school. My daughter sneaks in the home gym as I am finishing up my interval cardio session. She knows to find me in the gym if I am not asleep in bed. “Good morning my sweet first grader!” She is all dressed and ready. She looks so beautiful. She seems so mature.
She first comments that she would prefer me to wear different clothing for bus drop off. I guess my hot pink leggings weren’t cool enough? She runs off to my closet to pick me something much more appropriate.
Upon her return, she asks me to remind her one more time what her bus number is. For the past week she has been very concerned that she will forget her bus number. I reassured her that the school has accounted for this and sent home a back pack tag with her name and bus number. I am laughing because I laminated the tag and tied it to her backpack with surgical knots. Maybe I shared her fear…just a little?
After we took the front porch pictures- I sent them to my parents right away. My dad is typically asleep at this hour, so I was surprised when he messaged me right away. He said, “Reminds me of your first day! I still remember it. I love you and am so very PROUD of the mother you are and the father Mark is.” There were no tears all morning- now I’m a mess.
We tend to put a lot of pressure on ourselves as mothers. At the most basic level, we want our children to be happy and fulfilled. We often design our lives around their needs. We nurture and love them. We comfort them when they are scared. We give it our all.
Today, I want to give you the courage to celebrate the amazing job you are doing.
Take a few seconds and think about the following question. How many times have you acknowledged that you are proud of yourself for being a great mom? Can you count the occasions on one hand? It is not common for moms to pat themselves on the back. But what if we started honoring ourselves in this capacity? What if we validated the dedication we have to being successful at the most intense and meaningful job?
Whether you are a brand new mom taking your baby home from the hospital, or putting your first born on the bus for the first time, or driving your young adult to college…..I am going to challenge you. Every day that you can, focus on making one deep connection with your child. If you are lucky enough to have her still living at home, get eye level and tell her how important she is. Give her a warm hug. Now- engrain this moment in your memory. Reflect on this moment often. Accept that as a loving mother- you are more than enough.
As a mother of two young children, I realize that I am so blessed to be where I am right now. I have some time before they will move on to exciting new adventures. Every moment that I am present and able to make a deep connection, I will file it away for a rainy day. I hope to acquire a database of quick clips that will serve me a lifetime of comforting joy. When I close my eyes, I will be able to relive these moments again and again. I am proud that I attempted to make every second count.
…But seriously, when did hot pink leggings go out of fashion?