I never really enjoyed school. And one of the greatest days of my life was the day I graduated from college, because I knew I would never again step back into a classroom.
Less than two years after I received my college degree, I became a mother. I found out quickly that school was back in session, and the degree I had signed up for, Parenting, was going to be one of the single most difficult yet rewarding experiences of my life.
And almost nine years later, class is still in session for me. Some days I receive a gold star for my efforts, and other days I find myself shamefully writing lines on the chalkboard.
A few lessons I’ve learned from parenting little kids:
Your heart will go walking.
I watch daily as my heart walks around outside my body. Each of my four children have been given a unique and beautiful nonreturnable piece of my soul.
To sit back and watch your heart take its first steps on wobbly toddler knees? It’s nothing short of breathtaking.
Magical moments are rarely planned.
Sure, I do my best to fill the calendar with activities and events my young family will enjoy and hopefully remember for years to come. But over the years, I’ve realized that some of the best memory making experiences are made when we’re just living our everyday life, doing everyday boring things like playing in the backyard and sharing a meal together.
You will laugh, and you will cry.
There is probably nothing more emotional that becoming a parent. On a daily basis I find myself crying to the point of laughter, and laughing to the point of tears.
Chaos can be bliss.
I have four kids. Chaos in our house isn’t something that happens occasionally, instead it’s a lifestyle. An exhausting, magical, completely crazy lifestyle I’m madly in love, with and wouldn’t trade for all the organization in the world.
You will find your inner "mama bear."
In general, I’m a cool and collected sort of gal. My feathers don’t get ruffled easily, and I’ve embraced the “go with the flow” mentality. Shy by nature, I didn’t know if I could ever become a tough and aggressive mama bear.
But because of the fierce love I have for my children, I’ve learned that my mama bear is in fact alive and well. There is nothing on this earth I wouldn’t do to protect my little baby cubs.
Unconditional love is a real thing.
Before I became a parent, I found it somewhat unbelievable that you could truthfully fall in love instantly. That unconditional love really did exist. But dude, the moment I held my baby for the first time I knew without a shadow of a doubt that unconditional love was a real thing.
Photo credit: Casey Mullins