Cece turns four today, Valentine’s Day 2018, and we’re having a small celebration with friends. There will be pizza, cake (of course), and lots and lots of pink and red hearts. This low key gathering seems just right after the extravaganza’s I’ve planned for her past three birthdays. This year I am tired from the recent move (not to mention that we’ve lived here one month so Cece doesn’t really have friends yet…)
But, this day is not just a celebration for Cece, it is a celebration of Emory and I as well–we’ve managed to keep another human being alive for FOUR YEARS! And, I won’t lie…there were times when it was questionable. My sanity was shaky because Cece seemed to be possessed by a crying demon and I thought “whyyyy did we do this???”
In the end parenthood is worth it one million time over, but I’ve learned a few things along the way to keep me sane:
- This too shall pass. The nonstop crying, the peeing in the bed, the picky eating…it all ends. Kids go through a million phases, and you blink and it’s over and you’re on to the next one. So I try to remember this every time we’re in the middle of particularly hard stage, and it helps.
- You don’t need all the fancy kid stuff. I literally use an old L.L. Bean boat bag as a diaper bag these days because, here’s a secret…your diaper bag is going to get poop or vomit in it at some point. “Kid-friendly” products, like lotions and bath soaps, are the same as gentle adult ones. I use plaid old Aquaphor or CeraVe, and the kids’ skin is better than ever.
- Stop comparing yourself to other moms. There will always be another mom who seemingly does it better than you. So you do you. Do the best you can, take care of yourself and your kids, and be the best mom you can be. That brings me to my next point…
- Take time for yourself. I know, I know. This is easier said than done, but try to do it everyday–even if it’s just to watch your favorite television show for 30 minutes. You will be a better mom for it.
There’s so much of the “good stuff” when you have kids…like reading them books at night. We read “The Owl and the Pussycat” (a poem from the 1870s with charming quirkiness), and Cece says her favorite page is the “bong tree” page. And, I can’t help but laugh because this weird page is my favorite too. And then my mind wanders, and I think, “I’m creating this weird little person who is just like me”…who loves the bong tree page. I can’t make it up, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Cece is opinionated, outgoing, and FULL of questions. Here’s to turning four, Cece, and more birthdays to come.
Photos by Suzanna Stern Photography
Party supplies by Jollity & Co. Party Boutique