When it comes to being a mom, it's all about the little things that bring out the joy in motherhood. Below we share the top 10 moments for moms!
Sharing -- more than just a pretty word
One of Mom's biggest little moments is the first time her baby shares... willingly. This moment, like spotting an exotic Amazonian bird in the Pacific Northwest, is rare. If the sharing takes place among siblings, rarer yet! When this happens for the first time, it's time to celebtrate Ã± you've done well! Pause for just a few moments, take a deep breath, smile, exhale slowly and relish this accomplishment. Let loose. Openly weep tears of joy in public. Other mothers will understand.
Since the beginning of time, moms of almost-potty-trained toddlers have woken up in a cold sweat thinking, "Oh my word. My whole life revolves around someone else's bathroom routine." Archaeologists have decoded the hieroglyphics of cavewomen, which loosely translated state, "I don't know what I'm going to do if this little son of a cave dweller doesn't start doing his business in the dirt hole out back." But soon... very soon, your little one will finally potty train. Celebrate this joyous moment by purchasing the smallest purse you can find. No more Beatrix Potter diaper bags for you!
You little sass-a-frass!
Few moments are more special in a mom's life than the first time she gets sassed. Seriously. Most little ones pop off somewhere around 18 months to 2 years, and it is quite possibly one of the most hilarious moments of motherhood. At this moment you realize you're raising a little spitfire who isn't afraid to stand up for herself (ever mindful of the fine line between "little spitfire" and "unruly dragon"). Celebrate this moment by trying to keep a straight face (good luck) and speed-dialing Grandma who will tell you, between loud guffaws, that your daughter is just like you!
That's my baby!
Even if you worry that your child might be a bit clumsy or awkward, fear not. They will, at some point in their lives, shine in the public arena. They might play a piano recital for their school or be quoted in the paper (hopefully in a positive way). Maybe they'll be elected to a group or organization, be placed on the honor roll, or win a spelling bee. These flashes of brilliance are cause for celebration. Rehearse a modest response in the mirror for when other moms congratulate you. The shoulder-shrugging, it's-no-big-deal approach is the most socially acceptable. Save the victory dance, fist-pumping and smug phone call to your sister for when you get home.
Bad Mood Booster
By far one of the greatest little moments for a mom is when her baby pulls her out of a bad mood. We've all been there; you've got raving PMS, your health insurance refuses to pay a covered expense, or your husband forgot to mention that is mother is coming for a visit -- today. It's about this time your daughter will stomp into the room in your shoes, a princess dress, lipstick all over her face and underwear on her head. Then she'll turn to her doll and say "You're kidding me. Tonight? To-night? The sheets aren't washed, there's no food in the house. Great. I guess I'll just prepare myself for the standard you're a dismal wife and mother speech." Moments like these can take the stress out of just about any situation and remind us how blessed we are (it will also remind us to keep our voices down when we are on the phone). Celebrate by journaling these events. You can refer to your journal the next time you feel something or someone darken your door.
Kids for hire
Every mom's primary objective is to raise a productive member of society. We watch the nightly news with its parade of maladjusted citizens and pray we aren't doing something that will someday land our child in the headlines. Unfair though it may be, how many brows are being arched in the direction of Nadya Suleman's mother? This is why when our babies are old enough to work and they are hired, we breathe a sigh of relief. Someone deems our baby employable! Celebrate this tremendous first step by letting your baby treat you to lunch!
Reading is fundamental
Mr. Rodgers made story time seem like a magical occasion. Let's be real here. At the end of a long day, reading books to your preschoolers doesn't just put them to sleep, it puts you to sleep too. This is because we rarely get away with reading one story. It's bedtime so our little ones want to turn this into an epic journey whereby Mommy reads just one more. Story time really loses its luster if you're a stay-at-home mom and you've already read Little Miss Spider's Tea Party 14 times that day. That's why when our chicks learn to read, it is cause for celebration on multiple levels, not the least of which is getting a break at bedtime. Celebrate this milestone by reading one book to your child and letting him read just one more until he gets sleepy. Then treat yourself to a book that isn't about a do-gooder dinosaur, a talking spider or a big red dog.
The first time you take your child on a real vacation provides countless little moments. There really is something about seeing the ordinary through an awestruck child. As we age, we tend to become jaded about the little things in life. Watching your daughter turn inside out over a butterfly can help put things back in perspective for you. Celebrate these occasions by giving yourself permission to become the age of your child again. Be filled with wonder, and be amazed by all the little miracles around you. Take lots of pictures too! There might come a time in your daughter's life when you need to remind her that she once thought you were the coolest person alive because you took her to the zoo.
Honoring the moms in our lives
Sadly, our grandma can be among the first people we lose in our family. And many of our mothers have passed earlier than they should have. Turn the anniversary of their passing or their birthdays into a celebration of the little things you remember about them. Did your grandma love petunias? Gather your sisters on her birthday and plant petunias together. Did Mom love to go for walks? Ask Mom's sister to go for a walk with you each year on the anniversary of her passing, and visit about all the things you remember about her. When your daughters are old enough, include them in the celebration so they can get a sense of how special Mom or Grandma was. Celebrating the little things about our mom or grandma is a meaningful way to honor her while keeping her spirit alive.
It's a little impractical to buy 200 pairs of socks and a cart full of underwear just so we can duck questions about clean clothes. Instead, moms tend to engage in a relentless routine of laundry devoid of any sense of accomplishment. Just about the time we find the bottom of the laundry basket, it's time to do sheets and towels. This endless cycle is why we all eagerly await the day when our children can do their own laundry. This little moment allows us to occasionally unshackle ourselves from the laundry-room chains. It also brings our kids a bit closer to self-sufficiency, which means they'll be better equipped to care for us in our old age! We can celebrate this moment in small, but important ways, like watching The Real Housewives of New York (who are we kidding -- Bravo TV has taken some liberties with the words Ã«real' and Ã«housewives').
Some child experts and parents argue that we shouldn't be friends with our kids. We shouldn't try to be our kids' friends, but the reality is if you've encouraged good manners and good behaviors, guess what happens? Your kids become your friends. Not because you are trying to be cool and make them like you, but rather because through all your hard work and dedication you've raised people you actually want to spend time with. There really is no greater gift for a parent. By doing the work when your kids are little, you'll end up with a teen daughter that you gab and giggle with over lunch or a teen son who impresses you with his wisdom and thoughtfulness. Celebrate these moments by being in the moment. Forget about the bills. Never mind the housework. Soak up every second of closeness with your teens. They'll be gone soon enough. You can pay the bills and clean the house then.