Cheers to 9 Years: Celebrating the Blur of Being a Mom

Tomorrow my oldest son turns 9. My firstborn. The boy that made me a mom. When did that happen??

I’m having a bit of a meltdown. A silent one, the kind that happens in my head. The kind that makes me think…

How has it been 9 years?

I can’t remember 9 years of memories, did I even stop and enjoy it??

Have I been a good mom?

Why does it feel like a blur? Why don’t I remember more!!??!!?? 

HOLY COW, 9 years is halfway to 18! And at 18 he MOVES OUT! (God willing)

In all seriousness, I started thinking about how we’re halfway through the parenting journey. The part where he lives with us I mean. Not officially, because we also have a 6 year old, but we’re halfway with this first one. The boy that lived through my first time mom excitement, the zillions of photos, the mistakes, the nervousness.

When I look back on the past 9 years I think about how it went by so fast, and the usual happens… the doubts creep in, the “mom guilt,” the inability to remember details makes me question myself as a mom, and I HATE THAT.

But here’s the thing. We can’t remember it all. We can’t even begin to remember 20% of it. We’re just not built that way.

So much of motherhood is repetitive…

The heating up milk for 30 seconds at bedtime. EVERY SINGLE NIGHT.

The cutting up food at dinner. EVERY SINGLE NIGHT.

The fixing breakfast. And lunch. EVERY SINGLE DAY.

(apparently all things revolve around eating and drinking at my house)

We go through the motions because we have to. It’s how we survive. It’s how we keep moving forward and loving on these little people and raising them to be amazing human beings. We keep fixing milk, cleaning boo-boos, telling bedtime stories, wiping noses, changing diapers, attending school activities, washing baseball pants, planning birthday parties, negotiating arguments, driving to after school activities, planning summer fun. We do these things over, and over, and over. Because they are just a few of the many small things that make up motherhood.

But some days it feels like motherhood has been a blur and it is SO HARD to remember if we stopped to enjoy it.

Sure, I remember the things that were really meaningful.

When we crossed paths with a wolf in Yellowstone and he talked about it for weeks (years actually).

How excited he was to conquer his fear and ride Space Mountain.

When he was the last rider in a 7 mile bike ride escorted by two police officers and the video went viral.

How he looks when he sleeps because I check on him every single night. (9 years people – every.single.night)

And I can remember the hard stuff.

When he fell off a swing and broke his collarbone and we ALMOST skipped the ER thinking he was just being dramatic.

When pneumonia came out of nowhere in about 30 minutes and the pediatrician sent us straight to the ER for an overnight stay.  

And I remember the “phases”

(can I get an OH DEAR ME for the phases these little people go through??)

How at 3 years old he would only wear one specific baseball shirt and a blue baseball cap EVERY SINGLE DAY. (see above)

How he insisted on having warm milk in the morning and at night, warmed up for precisely 30 seconds (somehow we haven’t outgrown this)

But it is so hard to remember the small moments. The daily moments. The moments that make up 90% of motherhood. The details.

Our brain plays a trick on us. We forget. We feel guilty. We wonder if we really enjoyed it if we can’t remember the details or how we felt.

Here’s the thing though, here’s the important part:

WE ENJOYED IT.

We kissed our baby’s head and enjoyed that baby smell.

We sat and held them while they slept.

We laid on the floor and made them laugh.

We were relieved when they got a healthy report from the pediatrician.

We were nervous and yet excited when they went off to preschool.

We held them when they cried.

We talked about kindness and how to make friends.

We laughed.

We smiled.

We read.

We played.

WE DID OUR BEST.

And we continue – day after day after day – to do our best. To make memories where we can. To give ourselves grace when we don’t enjoy it, when we lose our patience, when we’ve just had enough.

So don’t you dare let your doubts get the best of you. Stop and remind yourself that you DID enjoy the moments, the ones that make up a lifetime of motherhood. Even if you can’t remember what it feels like to hold a newborn baby, even if you can’t remember the funny way your toddler talked. Those moments all happened and you lived them and you smiled {sometimes} and you were the best mom you could be. Remind yourself. Regularly.

So cheers to 9 {sometimes blurry} years.

Today I’ll think back on 9 years of memories. Of baseball games. Of family trips. Of lazy days. Of family game nights. Of days at the beach. Of talks about school. I’ll think of the things I can remember, and I’ll remind myself that I enjoyed so much more of it than I can squeeze into my memory bank.

And I’ll think ahead to the hopes and dreams I have for the next 9 years. I’ll think about the conversations we might have, about all that he will learn, wondering who he might become.

Instead of second guessing myself, I’ll celebrate the 9 memorable years we’ve had and the 9 exciting years ahead. Because dang it, I’ve done a pretty great job so far!

2017-08-22T09:48:06+00:00 August 22, 2017|Motherhood & Parenting|

2 Comments

  1. Lorrie Bellar August 25, 2017 at 12:10 pm - Reply

    I love this April – beautifully said!

  2. Alia August 25, 2017 at 2:45 pm - Reply

    Such a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing! Got me all teary thinking about my oldest who will be turning 9 in a few months (and my 4 year old…and my 2 year old). Exactly what I needed to hear!

Leave A Comment