The things you learn

Caitlin and 3 day old Mac
April 2010

As you read this, I'm dropping both my babies at school.  Caitlin starts first grade, and Mackenzie has decided that she must go to Preschool.  So instead of arguing with Miss Mac (which is a losing battle), we decided to send her, a year earlier than we planned.  She will only go 2 days a week, but even that is pulling at my heart strings.  It's the ultimate cliche, but time, it flies, it leaps, it gallops, it races.  And you are unable to stop it.

I recently posted that picture to Instagram to share a guest post.  It captures a day I will forever remember.  The memory is still so fresh, that I know that it's close to 7:30 in the morning.  Caitlin is eating a cookie that is almost as big as her head.  Her sippy cup holds sweet iced tea.  She is wearing her most prized possession, Panda PJs, that she refused to take off for an entire month.  So I went to Costco three days into that phase and bought 5 pairs.  And yes, she wore them around the clock for close to a month.  I was pregnant, sue me.  I know that Mackenzie has just had a bottle, that she needs her cap to keep up her body temp, that I shouldn't put her in a boppy like that.  I also know that I didn't care.  I was in survival mode.  I was 3 days post pardum, after suffering a post pardum hemorrhage, and losing almost 2 pints of blood.  I was weak, I was emotional, and I was nervous.  I wasn't prepared for any of it.  Not the hemorrhage, not the PJs, and not the task of mothering two children.  I know that now, because about 2 hours after this picture was taken, I completely lost myself.  I made a mountain out of a mole hill, and I yelled and fought with a two year old.  Why did I loose my cool?  I don't remember, but I'm sure it had to do with a mess, or a spilled sippy, or being loud while her sister slept.  
It wasn't a good reason to loose my cool, but I did.  
And it was a lesson to be learned.

I find the toughest lessons to learn in motherhood aren't the big ones.  They aren't the lessons on bedtime, or feeding schedules.  They aren't lessons on multitasking or chore charts or discipline.  They are the little things you learn about yourself and about your children.

You learn that peanut butter and jelly sandwiches don't mean defeat at dinner.
You learn that you really can eat grilled cheese for breakfast every day for two weeks.
You learn that Panda PJs are fashionable everywhere if you are under 3.
You learn that sometimes fast food is just easier and cleaner (no dishes).
You learn that sometimes going to Target is more important than laundry.
You learn that your way isn't the right way for everyone, 
but the right way for you.

You learn that no matter how old your children get,
they are still your babies.
They are still little to you.
And even when you drop them off at college,
they will still be those babies in the picture,
of that day you will never forget.


  1. I hope their first days go well!

  2. Visiting from The Narrow Lens. Love this post and love the honesty and vulnerability in your writing. We've all been here in our mothering journey, we just couldn't verbalize it like you did. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope you each can navigate these new waters with grace and love.


  3. oh gosh... tears.. choked up...lumps in my throat. that last part got me... the 'no matter how old your children get' part... has been sticking with me alot this i cling to the precious moments i still have with my oldest before he becomes a teenager and my youngest as still being "the baby."
    I catch myself telling me kids to leave me alone or yelling at them for simply asking for something while i am busy doing something, and remembering, they will only be needing me this much for so enjoy it..