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32 Lessons for Mother's Day

Kristi Ramey writing in today! I hope you take away something from these lessons we share today. Please feel free to add your own in the comments-we all need to support one another, especially as mothers.

Long ago, in a land far, far away....

Ok, it wasn't that long ago, and Ohio isn't exactly a distant land for those of us living here in Richmond, Virginia. But as I sit here, in my cozy home office, approaching Mother's Day, I can't help but think about my girls and my journey as a mother. My relationship with my adoptive mom had it's ups and downs, and my bio mom was not part of my life. So when the Lord blessed me with my first daughter, I was TERRIFIED. There were so many doubts, so many times I wish I knew more, or was "better". Now on this side, it's easy enough to look back and see what we did wrong, but also what we did right! And considering all three of my daughters are loving, strong women who are my best friends...well, I think we did alright!

Why 32 lessons for a Mother's Day post?

That's how many times I've celebrated with my family. ❤️

  1. You'll never have it all figured out, because as soon as it feels that why, something changes.

  2. Always, always pack an extra shirt for mom in the diaper bag.

  3. Each kid is an entirely unique, beautiful human. Take the time to learn them well.

  4. You will eventually find your groove, though probably not in the first few weeks after giving birth.

  5. Your significant other cannot read your mind, so let them know when you need a break from the kids, before you lose your cool.

  6. Don't be afraid to change things when you learn new information or find something else is a better fit for your family.

  7. Don't take sippy cups of milk in the vehicles. Just don't.

  8. You will either overpack or under pack. It will never be the right amount. Best err on the side of caution and bring too much.

  9. One day, one of your kids will throw a fit in public. It may not be your first, maybe not even your second, but eventually, someone will lose their mind in a public space and it will be very, very humbling. (It ensures that we never get too cocky.)

  10. Personally, cleaning up bodily fluids DID get easier. But also, you can buy THIS magic powder that soaks up vomit, especially if you're squeamish.

  11. Feed your kid good food, but also keep some dino chicken nuggets in the freezer for stressful days.

  12. Breastfeeding doesn't make you a better mom. But if you ARE breastfeeding, it is totally ok to be proud of that.

  13. Keep a mom snack stash. One day you'll need that emergency chocolate.

  14. The fire department will walk you through how to properly install a car seat for free, if you're feeling unsure about it.

  15. Glow sticks are always fun, no matter what age you are. They are great for long car rides (once you know toddler won't chew on them). Buy a bunch immediately after July 1st and pull them out when you need a fun distraction.

  16. You can make a paste with baking soda and water and put it on bee stings. It helps a lot with the pain!

  17. There will always, always be unmatched socks. Just surrender and let it be.

  18. Your kisses are actually MAGIC and will make booboos better, at least for the first few years (hugs work later on).

  19. Buy THESE once kids are big enough for popsicles. It collects the drips (mostly).

  20. It is ok to pull over if the baby is screaming and it's just too much.

  21. Baby carriers are such a life saver. If you don't like using one, try a different style (there are many) until you find a good fit. Note: Our Richmond Birth and Baby office has a large collection that you can come and try on!

  22. Witching hour is a real thing. Do what you can to work around it, like cooking food ahead of time, or setting a playlist that is soothing *for you*.

  23. Don't put in car seats right before you leave. Try to do it ahead of time. It will always take longer than you think.

  24. Don't be afraid to say, "I don't know", especially as the kids get older. Figure it out together.

  25. If everyone is breaking down, try a dance party, a walk in fresh air, or some water (bath, drink, sprinkler, water table, etc). All of these can be a good "reset". Honestly, I feel like this is good advice whether it's a newborn or a teenager.

  26. If you mess up, apologize immediately. You will never, ever regret taking ownership of that mistake and making it right. Your kids will learn through your example.

  27. Screens aren't evil, they are just tools. But you need to be wise in how you use them. It's harder to pull back from using them once you start!

  28. Treat yourself to coffee and a manicure every once in a while.

  29. Every "bad day" will end. Each morning is a fresh start.

  30. Sit and play with the kids. Do the make believe, the board game, the Lego building or the coloring. Do it even when it's boring. I PROMISE you will look back and cherish those memories.

  31. When you find a solid mom friend, hold onto them. Grow together.

  32. Awkwardness is not bad. Don't be afraid of awkward conversations.

Three women stand arm in arm, holding flowers and wearing blue dresses. They are smiling.
My three beautiful girls.

We want to recognize that this holiday is complicated for some, and melancholy for others. Please know that it's ok to not be ok. If this is not the holiday that brings you joy, your experience is valid. From a mother who had to break generational chains-I see you, and it is a very lonely road to walk. I hope you felt my love and care for you, hope you see that it IS possible to have a redeeming motherhood story.

And in case no one has told you today, Happy Mother's Day!

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