My little boys love early mornings. They love running into our room and waking us up. They love seeing our faces. They love hearing our voices. They love making us laugh. They love jumping on us while we groan about the sunlight and only half seriously ask them to go back to sleep. They especially love early weekend mornings but not because they don’t love school but because they especially love us. On Saturday mornings Matty will scream from the living room, a snack in one hand and a dinosaur in the other, while watching cartoons in his underwear, “MOM! NO SCHOOL TODAY?!!!” After I confirm, Bot will usually follow suit, “MAAAAAHHM? NO ‘CHOOL T’DAY?!”

It’s one of my very favorite things.

But they don’t just love early mornings, they love late mornings, lunch time, early afternoons, late afternoons, early evenings and late evenings. The only time of day they’re not particularly fond of is the exact moment Seth and I are standing in their doorway, preparing to shut off their light, saying our final I love yous for the day and and blowing our final kisses.

On Mother’s Day I got to sleep in until 9:30. And while I sat on the couch in sweats, smelling like sleep, waiting for the boys to come home from the neighborhood bakery, I tried to think about the last time I had slept in that late. It’s been hard to sleep in since having kids, of course there are the kids but there’s also that never-ending to-do list and the ongoing list of obligations. As I sat and peacefully caught the end of Under the Tuscan Sun, I thought about my teenage years. All those “early” weekend mornings when my parents would wake me up to, as they’d say, ‘get things done around the house’ and I’d grouchily ask why they couldn’t just sleep in like the rest of the world, flashed in my mind.

Three years of motherhood and I’m beginning to get it.

Later on, when my kids are teenagers and they begrudgingly ask why I can’t sleep in like the rest of the world, I hope I think fondly back to these years. Mornings of tiny hands petting my face, sometimes before the sun has even lit up the sky. The mornings I’d wake up to two rowdy boys throwing their bony bodies around carelessly next to my head while I sleep. Early mornings waiting in bed, pretending to sleep because the hurried pitter-patter of small feet on a cold hard wood floor rushing in for snuggles just after the crack of dawn is magic. The way-too-early mornings where I’d wake up and shuffle across the hall to an empty full-size bed adorned with dinosaur pillows and blankets because the tickle of a stuffed sting ray resting next to me on my pillow and the soft snores of a growing boy had denied me an entire night’s worth of sleep. The early, early mornings I’d wake up to the swift kick of a growing foot to the rib cage – for the fifth time – and the weight of a bare leg capped with a skinned-knee strewn across my torso after a night full of thunderstorms. Crabby and exhausted mornings waking up in an uncomfortable full-sized bed with two small boys snuggled in close after a night full of loud screams and long cries, thanks to night terrors of stolen cookies and missing ice cream.

I hope later on when they struggle to figure out who they are and I’m not the first face they want to see when they wake up, I think of these years. These years when they say I’m their best friend and I know they’re not lying. When they stop in the middle of what they’re doing to run over really quickly and give me a kiss and say, “I lub you, Mom” because it just popped into their head, and they can’t not tell me. When they thank me randomly for giving them a cracker or taking them to the zoo or letting them watch Peter Rabbit or giving them a glass of chocolate milk because they’re not sure they did and they just want me to know they’re grateful. These years when they ask me to play with them again and again and again, over and over because there’s no one else they’d rather play with.

Every stage of this journey might not be as magical as this one (though I doubt it) but I hope every great Mom, ‘mom’, mom-to-be, second mom and third mom got a moment over the week to look for the magic that is motherhood, whatever stage you’re in. Because even in all of its exhaustion, challenge, mess and inconvenience, it is nothing short of miracle and you are nothing short of a marvel.

Here’s to another year of making the world go round.

Image result for mom cheers gif

 

A large part of me always wanted to be a teacher. In college, I mentored writing students and when I transferred to Iowa, I went on to work at a preschool and child care center, staying a year after graduation while I tried to figure out what my next step would be. I applied for […]

Continue Reading

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times: BLESS THE SINGLE PARENTS. Seth returned home late last night after a 5-day/4-night guys trip and let me tell ya, there is nothing that makes me question my parenting abilities or tests my patience quite like being the sole care provider for my kids […]

Continue Reading

The other evening Seth and I were sitting around talking about a variety of things when I made a comment about how I wanted to start running again. “I could probably start going back down to the trail and running in the mornings…” My voice trailed off as I reconsidered saying what I was about […]

Continue Reading

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times: I don’t know who said the twos were terrible but I could not disagree more. Matty’s twos were magic. He was hilarious, communicative and an all around joy to be around. Bot’s twos, so far, have been mellow in comparison to his rage-filled, psychotic […]

Continue Reading

My husband is a careful man. He’s cautious and predictable, sturdy and stable. He worries. He double and triple checks. He analyzes the placement of the knives on the countertop and not-so-slyly checks the lock on the oven door when I’m cooking dinner. He makes sound financial choices and he’s conservative with our money, despite […]

Continue Reading

Dear Spring, What the fuck are you doing? Stop being such a tease. Show the fuck up and stick around. It’s not that hard. Don’t, as Bic Runga would sing, come and go like you do. Quit, as the Backstreet Boys would sing, playing games with my heart. MY HEART IS FUCKING TIRED, ok?! My […]

Continue Reading

​Two of my best friends are coming to visit us this weekend and I’m so excited. The last time the three of us were together was last fall. Their visit just so happened to coincide with Seth’s 15-year high school reunion, so we spent our weekend together in a small town in western Iowa where […]

Continue Reading

So far today I have done the following: Woken up with hives Taken a cold shower (thanks to said hives) Left my keys in my house Realized I was locked out when I went to get said keys Broken in to the house with my library card (thanks to resourceful, and yet terrifying, instructions from […]

Continue Reading

I’ve let a few days pass since hundreds of thousands of kids across the country marched for their lives. I’ve let it all sink in. I’ve seen all of the footage, I’ve read a lot of the articles – from both sides, I’ve watched the interviews, I’ve tried to understand the other side of the […]

Continue Reading