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The Natural Progression of Why Parenting Rocks

besteverIt’s true that parenting isn’t for sissies. It is the hardest, most frustrating, most exhausting job I’ve had since coming out of my mom’s birth canal.

What? Too graphic? That’s parenting for you.

We hear honest stories about horrors of kids who don’t sleep through the night until they’re three, or only eat pancakes for five years, or refuse to potty train. We hear parents groan about being so tired they could fall asleep at their desk and how they’ve put on weight because pizza and wine are the menu when life is so crazy. We parents have a knack for making parenting look like the most unglamorous, awful task in the universe to where our childless friends are buying stock in birth control.

We hear a mom say ,”THEY ARE DRIVING ME CRAZY!” about her kids and then turn around in the same breath and say, “But they’re the best part of my life.”

So how does the best and the worst in life come together for parenting?

Easy. Those kids ARE exhausting. But I find that the stress of the day, every short fuse and tantrum fades away when I tuck him into bed at night and he whispers that he loves me. It’s worth it and here are the moments that have kept me going for 3.5 years:

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  • Thump thump, thump thump 1 of 31
    Thump thump, thump thump
    I see his heartbeat and know immediate, unconditional love.
  • The love just grows 2 of 31
    The love just grows
    ...literally. But I know I'm embarking on the greatest journey of my life. (Plus, all the attention! yay!)
  • I met him for the first time 3 of 31
    I met him for the first time
    ...there's nothing like that moment they placed my baby in my arms for the first time. Months of dreaming and wishing and hoping, and I marvel at how I can love someone I don't know.
  • I brought him home 4 of 31
    I brought him home
    ...and realize he is 100% mine, forever. It's exhausting bliss, this feeling of completion.
  • I put tiny pajamas on him 5 of 31
    I put tiny pajamas on him
    ...and it's so freakin' cute. Years from now, I'll pull out these jammies and sob big tears over them that my baby is all grown.
  • He smiled at me for the first time 6 of 31
    He smiled at me for the first time
    ...and the entire world opens up. I made my baby happy!
  • He had his first snow 7 of 31
    He had his first snow
    ...and I took pictures to put in that baby book, to share with all of my friends, to show them that while life is different, it's still fun and new every day.
  • He sits up for the first time 8 of 31
    He sits up for the first time
    ...and I realized that he's growing so fast. He's healthy and strong and it's because I'm doing a good job. ::pats self on the back::
  • He’s baptised 9 of 31
    He's baptised
    ...and I stand on the same stage where I married my husband, but now I hold the baby we made together. It's incredible.
  • He dips his toes in the ocean for the first time 10 of 31
    He dips his toes in the ocean for the first time
    ...and the sunrise is so perfect and my husband snaps a picture of us looking so happy because I was, down to my own toes in the sand.
  • He has his first haircut 11 of 31
    He has his first haircut
    ...and I cried momma tears over the curls that fall, because now he looks SO GROWN UP.
  • I pushed him on the swing for the first time 12 of 31
    I pushed him on the swing for the first time
    ...and know joy, true joy, through his smile.
  • He wears jeans for the first time 13 of 31
    He wears jeans for the first time
    ...and it's the funniest, cutest, most ridiculous thing you've ever seen. Which will be your description for most anything he does in the next 15 years.
  • He falls in love 14 of 31
    He falls in love
    ....with a specific toy. And I know that he is capable of loving.
  • He’s my best friend 15 of 31
    He's my best friend
    ...and I can't imagine life before him. That might be the exhaustion talking, though.
  • He makes his first piece of art 16 of 31
    He makes his first piece of art
    ...and I think it's the most talented, spectacular pile of paint and glue I've ever seen. Because it's made by him and I love everything he does.
  • We had an amazing day 17 of 31
    We had an amazing day
    ...that's just a regular day, but man! I wonder how I could have anything to do with another human that is this cool and fun.
  • He makes his first friend 18 of 31
    He makes his first friend
    ...and his world expands past me, past my husband, and I realize that I have to start letting him go, inch by inch.
  • He eats his first popsicle 19 of 31
    He eats his first popsicle
    ...and it drips all down his shirt in the hot summer heat, but it's so perfect and calm and his smile is so big.
  • He rides for the first time on Daddy’s shoulders 20 of 31
    He rides for the first time on Daddy's shoulders
    ...it's a moment you've thought about for months and years and here it is. He's such a big boy and you love them so much it hurts.
  • He finds a Christmas tree that’s just his size 21 of 31
    He finds a Christmas tree that's just his size
    ...and the cuteness factor is at 5,000%.
  • He really gets Christmas for the first time 22 of 31
    He really gets Christmas for the first time
    ...and you'll always remember that smile when he found that collection of monster trucks under the tree, just like he asked Santa.
  • He finds an activity to do with his Daddy 23 of 31
    He finds an activity to do with his Daddy
    ...and I realize it's another generation of golfing on Saturday and I sure did pick a good father of my babes.
  • He says I love you 24 of 31
    He says I love you
    ...and it's the greatest parenting moment yet. He loves me.
  • He gets big enough for a piggy-back ride 25 of 31
    He gets big enough for a piggy-back ride
    ...and it's one of those cool parenting moments I remember on the flip side of being a kid and riding on my daddy's back.
  • He falls asleep in my lap 26 of 31
    He falls asleep in my lap
    ...and I get a solid hour to realize that he has my nose, my husband's lips, and he's utterly perfect.
  • He starts reading out loud 27 of 31
    He starts reading out loud
    ...and I realize that my love of books has passed on to him and that he'd rather curl up in my lap than play cars on Saturday morning.
  • He asks to hold hands in the car 28 of 31
    He asks to hold hands in the car
    ...my heart explodes all over the morning commute and into a 2pm status meeting.
  • He has pajama day at school 29 of 31
    He has pajama day at school
    ...and while he's only wearing jammies now, I picture this same pose for the first day of kindergarten and then him wearing a cap and gown at 18 years old. Cue the tears.
  • He races off, independent and brave 30 of 31
    He races off, independent and brave
    ...and I realize that maybe I'm doing a good job after all.
  • So I want to do it all over again. 31 of 31
    So I want to do it all over again.
    ...and find myself rocking alone in the middle of the day in an empty bedroom full of nursery furniture and bins of baby clothes. Totally normal behavior.

 

More from BA:

Parenting sucks, y’all.

My favorite Etsy stuff.

Beth Anne writes words & takes pictures at Okay, BA! You can also find her on the Twitters & Facebook.

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