Tuesday, March 16, 2010

365 Days of Lessons Learned

I've been shedding quite a few tears in the last day or two. Those bittersweet mommy tears. My beautiful baby girl will be 1 year old tomorrow. I don't even know how to describe what I'm feeling. Sad? No. Nostolgic and sentimental, absolutely. I've been looking at pictures and seeing all the ways she's changed and grown over the last year. I've come to the realization that I've done quite a bit of growing and changing too. My daughter has taught me so many things over the course of this year. Here are some of those lessons:

-Go with the flow. No matter how well you plan, something will come up and change everything. The key is to remember that the majority of the time, it just doesn't matter.
-Simple is perfect. No need for complicated or expensive toys--an empty water bottle or a paper towel roll will do just fine.
-Comfortable, washable clothes are a must. Nothing makes you feel worse than something that is scratchy, too tight or gives you a rash. Plus, when you spit up, spill or get something dirty, it's no big deal.
-Children are life's light. Even in our darkest hours, looking at the face of a child can make the most painful heartbreak bearable.
-Poop is extremely important. Who knew how much this dirty little subject would dominate my adult conversations with my husband?
-Don't cry over spilled milk. Or pureed carrots on the wall, floor and baby. Or pasta and beans thrown around the kitchen.
-Nothing makes you feel more helpless than a sick child. Nothing makes you feel more like a hero when they climb into your arms for comfort.
-Change is difficult. Whether is learning to crawl, cutting teeth or trying solid foods, no change happens without mishaps and even a little pain. However, the change is so rewarding once it's achieved.
-Nothing in the entire world is more beautiful than seeing your child smile. No sunrise or shooting star can compare to the twinkle in a child's eye.
-Forget those "3 little words" that we always long to hear. Nothing melts the heart quicker than hearing your baby say "mama".
-Be the best version of you, if not for your own sake, for your child's sake. Everything you do now impacts more than just you.

I'm sure there are more lessons that I have forgotten to write here. I know there are so many more to learn. I knew that becoming a mother would mean that I would be a guide and a teacher. I never realized how often I would also be the student.
After 365 days of school, I can't wait to see how the next chapters unfold.
Marissa Anne, you are the love of my life, my heart and soul. I have never been more blessed than the day you came into my life. I love you now and forever.