Top 11 Reasons I'm glad I'm a mom

This is off the top of my head and could change an hour from now (I'll likely spend the rest of the day saying, "I can't believe I didn't include _____". But, in response to Rhonda's challenge from a few posts ago, here are 11 reasons I'm glad I'm a mom. Can you list 11 (or 2 or 5) of your own? (Reasons you are glad you are a mom, dad, neither, both.)

1. Wally looking out the window in the morning and saying, "Moon, where are you?". Also the fact that when he falls he says, "Boys okay, Mama" and in general calls himself either "Boys" or "Honk-honk". 
2. Arts and crafts, tea parties, play-doh, tickle fights
3. No longer spending time on ridiculous "obligations"
4. Getting that childlike excitement over holidays again
5. Playing outside everyday, noticing things like pebbles, acorns and airplanes (This is starting to sound awkwardly cliche/hallmarky, but, like wearing a fancy dress, this kind of peppy list is not something I can really pull off)
6. Having a better understanding for everything my parents did**
7. Starting family traditions 
8. Finally becoming a semi-functioning adult (and I don't mean this in terms of having a fully stocked fridge but in terms of examining my behavior and trying to make it more consistent with overall values and priorities)
9. Watching Wally play at the beach with my nieces, seeing Wally and my mom gardening together, snuggling on the couch, and otherwise being spellbound by each other, bouncing Wally on an air-mattress with my cousins while singing some Italian making pizza song (and in general how wonderful these young cousins have been with him)
10. Amazement at seeing how much Alex adores Wally and being a dad
11. Feeling like each day, no matter how long a day's journey into night, was worthwhile and purposeful

**So many times now when out on some adventure when Wally is alternating between not having fun and breaking down I think, "This entire day is for you. Every single thing we're doing is for your benefit, it's not like I'm dragging you to Rite Aid and the bank and the post office, then I'd understand but you think YOU have the right to be kicking me and dumping out your snack cup and losing your shoes?" Then I think back to things our parents took us to, parks or halloween fairs or whatever, where I'd be in a bad mood and cranky and a pain in the ass. They're doing all that FOR the kids and the kids are the ones who are pissy? Are you kidding?

Oh, and I have to add, not having the days and weeks and years rush by anymore. People said, "You won't believe how quickly it goes. You blink and he'll be going into kindergarten." I can see how it could feel that way, and sometimes it's true on the playground telling him to "watch out for the baby" I'll think -- wait, I thought I was the one with the baby. But for the most part I was just determined not to let that happen -- not to let it all go by in a blur -- and part of the corrective was recording things in my journals scattered all over the place (I do wish I'd keep them in some kind of order, use only one at a time.) More importantly, though, is that you no longer get that sense of "What just happened? I can't remember if that was last year or the year before or the one before that. Today could be October 4, 2005." It never feels like that. Things change so quickly minute to minute, there could never be that sense that time flew by and you stood still.


  1. I love this post, Rachel. Thank you for highlighting the good stuff. Btw, you can full off a fancy dress, hot stuff. : )

  2. I think my very favoritest part is sort of a corollary to your #10 - which is, watching them be good to each other. But I can't disagree with any you have and would have listed many of the same, plus:

    - the warmth of a baby in bed with you and the fact that you know how to comfort him/her better than anyone in the world
    - hearing them say today is the best day ever -
    - healing with kisses
    - watching them be really good "community models" to the special kids in their integrated pre-school class, and knowing why they are so good at it
    - getting to buy yourself new winter boots because you managed to hand your 15 year old hiking style boots down to your 12 year old

    and I'm sure I could list a million more, but really many are along the same lines as those you have outlined, which I would summarize as "living in the moment".

  3. I love this list. Very touched.

  4. Elinor - I'm glad to have had the chance to highlight some of the good things. It's thanks to you & Rhonda. I kind of like being "pushed outside my comfort zone". More comfortable with sarcastic, half-kidding posts than genuine ones, when it comes to being a mom. Rhonda, I love that "best day ever". Reminds me of my sister who would greet every day with "sunny day, happy day" (until, based on her 4th grade autobiography, the day I was born!!!!). Keep laughing over and over at handing down the hiking boots. Thank you Hein. I have to say overall, tho, I don't think we (moms/dads) made a strong case for kids. Lots of silent lurkers on this post; kinda makes me wonder.

  5. You're right, we don't make a good case. When we see someone that is pregnant, we say "oh you're in for it!". When they say it's their 3rd, we say "better you than me!". I won't even tell you what people say when it's your fourth - apparently 4 breaks the barrier of what is a reasonable number of children to have and at that point you're just sucking up more than your share of the earth's resources.

    We tell nightmare labor stories followed by many vivid memories of sleep deprivation.

    Why do we compete in how badly we had it? Yes, parenthood is work. Anything worth doing is.

    But a life without children is something I can't picture. A life without a LOT of children is something I can't picture! I have 4 people who love me without reason or exception. They give me insight into myself when they copy everything I do. They warm my heart and are often so cute that I have to step outside to breathe. The love I feel for them is so overwhelming I can't even describe it.

    When I see a pregnant woman I smile and tell her "you are about to be a better person, and don't let anyone tell you differently". Then I tell her to buy a nipple shield, but that's sort of a different point.


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