Lady Hormone read them over my shoulder and she and I just welled and welled and welled.
Get your Kleenex and go here to read them all.
Here are some of the things I want most to remember. A Cliff's notes version of "Older" Mom Wisdom. But you really should go read the full posts, because Cliff's Notes will really only earn you a C on the test.
- I would have greeted my husband when he came home with funny kiddo stories rather than gripe.
- You'll miss being Mommy Everything to them, before they have friends they enjoy better, spouses they love more and pudgy little children of their own.
- It has taken me years to learn that putting my husband before my children's needs is actually allowing my children's needs to take top priority.
- If any of the other people in this house are awake, it is their time, not mine.
- Your kids won't remember most of the things you agonize over, and in a few years neither will you!
- Stop wishing even these tough days away. When they are teenagers it will be hard to even remember the days of tousled hair & snuggles after naps or tears & tantrums (yours and theirs!). You'll have plenty of time to yourself later.
- At 46, you will still say, "pee-pee" without even thinking about it.
- One last thing about marriage: you should take that date night thing seriously.
- Being a SAHM is something you will never regret. Never. Not one time.
- You do need the friendships of other women...Your husband cannot meet every emotional need and will not understand the things that thrill you and your friends, like a great find at Ikea or trouser jeans. And that is OK.
- Keep the topic (of sex) on the front burner so that you can pick up the conversation at any time without it being a weird moment.
- Treasure this time. Absorb as much into your memory as you can, because these days will end. Believe it or not, you're going to miss the chaos. You're going to miss the noise. You're going to miss the fingerprints on the windows. You're going to miss the look on their face when they go all day without going potty in their pants and they declare themselves a big boy/girl. You're going to miss reading "I think I can and I Love You Forever" 25 times a day, and you're going to miss the silliness that goes along with sweet, simple childhood .
- Make your home a place where there are clear and consistent rules for them and their friends but that is open and welcoming so they want to be there.
- Encourage them to have their own opinions even if they aren’t the same as yours.
- Put God alone at the center of your heart, at the center of every decision and every heartbreak and every mistake, and He will bless you and keep you and allow you to forgive yourself for the big mistakes and the little ones.
- You will be heart-sore from joys and trials from here on out. But sleep, and kids having the ability to buckle themselves, wipe themselves and pour their own milk will make the toll on your body and mind a little less costly.
- Don’t feel guilty about not being led to homeschool.
- Don’t blink. This is over before you realize it. Your breath will be taken away. Every single age that your children are will be your favorite age yet….
- Go ahead and buy those matching dresses from Old Navy. Turns out in a few years they won't think it is so fun to be matchy-matchy.
- Leave Bibles out all over the house where you can read a verse or two in stolen moments. There will be seasons where you can do in-depth Bible studies and Greek translations and word studies, but this is not it, and that is ok.
- On the days you don't think you can survive until naptime, remind yourself there will come a day when YOU get to take a nap while the kids unload the dishwasher, vacuum the living room, and gather all the trash.
- Write down their first words and funny phrases. Even the last child. Because it is going to stink when you have to make it up.
- You are doing such a good job. I know it feels like you are failing in a hundred ways, but you aren't. You are loving them, showing them God, and teaching them about His world. They are going to turn into amazing kids.
- A moment of raising your voice too loud or giving a look that is harsh will not send your child to a future therapist. Laughing a lot now will save your munchkins a truckload of money in their adulthood!
- A messy kitchen or bathroom is a lived in & welcoming place.
- Read, read, read.
- Give them time to spend alone in their own space. Whether it is a naptime (required around here until they were 6), or just quiet time with a book or favorite toy. This is good for them to develop thinking skills and for you to get a break. Give them time to dream.
- Also chores are not just boy and girl chores. Boys will have clothes and dishes to wash, girls will have cars to drive and homes to fix.
Enjoy every moment. There will finally be one last diaper, one last orthodontist visit, one last sporting event, and one last time they sit on your lap. Savor every moment, and when you think you have savored the moment, stop and savor it all over again.