Mother’s Day Guest Post: Amanda from Lullabies To Terrorize
May 8, 2011, 12:16 pm
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Our final guest blogger is Amanda, mother of Jack and blogger at Lullabies to Terrorize. Here are her words…

Greetings and salutations! I was given the pleasure of guest posting here and I couldn’t be more excited. My name is Amanda and I’m a Tucson dwelling mother to a rather sumptuous three year old named Jack. I started blogging about seven years ago starting way back on Livejournal when I was an angst ridden teenager to my now current haunt on Blogger, Lullabies To Terrorize. I wanted to document my time as a young, music/fashion/movie/art loving mom with few friends and quite a lot of learning and growing to do in the foreign land I knew as motherhood. From all nighters at a show to all nighters with my boobs being offered up in vain (I guess some things really do never change); from tattoo appointments to pediatrician appointments,  I slowly, but surely, found my way. So, without further adieu, here is what motherhood means to me.

  When I became pregnant with Jack I was nineteen years old. I was scared out of my mind and confused as to where my life would go now that I had another to consider. Jack’s father (we married after our first year of parenthood) was in the midst of finishing his Masters in Biomedical Engineering and I had just bought my very first car with the money I saved up from my job as a spa attendant, ready to start my life as an independent woman (the shoes on my feet? I did indeed buy them.). Needless to say, we were unprepared. It was tough, those first few months of my swelling with child, but we pushed on through. Jack was born March 8th, 2008 to a twenty year old motherhood novice. While my heart exploded with love for my new son my mind raced with fear. How will I maintain my identity while helping somebody develop their own? Will I fail at this? Will he resent me? Why do my boobs hurt so freaking much?!

     None of these questions have been answered (except the boob one- mastitis). And that’s okay. Because what motherhood means to me is this- it’s an adventure. You may not be climbing snow-capped mountains or exploring the Amazon, but you’ll be learning and growing constantly. Perpetually answering your own questions and creating new ones in equal measure and with those worlds unfold; navigated only by your mind, your gut and your child. I’m not nearly afraid as I used to be. Once I accepted that motherhood need not be entirely defined (how exhausting it would be to try and fit everything into a clean, precise box!) it became easier to navigate. Ready or not, here I come.
If I have any advice for Jack in the future, I would tell him-
1. Be genuine. No matter if it goes against the grain, stay true to yourself. It’s the only way to be truly happy with what you accomplish.
2. Shower regularly. Nobody likes a smelly ass dude.
3. Be a gentleman. They say chivalry is “dead” but that’s just because people have gotten lazy or jaded.
4. Embrace adversity. It may not feel good at the moment, you may hate life, but in the long run it will help you discover who you are and how much you can overcome.
5. Don’t feel the need to buy into trends. Fedoras are not that cool.
6. Do not try to keep a girl out late when her dad says to have her home at a specific time. You will NOT enjoy meeting her father after that.
7. Surround yourself with good music, good food and good people. It will make you feel rich when you may only have five dollars in your pocket.
8. If you want to get a tattoo please consult me first. Please. I beg of you. If you come home with a dragon drinking a jug of Jungle Juice on the arms I worked long and hard for nine months and over twenty-four hours of labor on I WILL smack you. I will smack you hard. Homie don’t play that.
9. Please don’t put me in a retirement home. I didn’t give you my all for sugar-free Jell-O and Bingo Fridays.
10. Remember us when you have your first child and when you feel the love that squeezes everything inside your chest, remember that we too have felt it for you, have always, will always, forever.
Happy Mother’s Day to you and your’s.

Mother’s Day Guest Post: Lauren From Before I Was A Mom
May 6, 2011, 9:23 pm
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Our next Guest Blogger in our Mother’s Day series is Lauren from Before I Was a Mom. Read on to hear her feelings about mothering her daughter Sierra and the lessons she hopes to teach her…

At least once a week I am awestruck by the fact that I am a mom. I’ll look down at my daughter, Sierra, and wonder how it’s possible I have been entrusted with the incredible responsibility of growing and now raising this amazing child. Sometime between nervously watching those two pink lines appear on the pregnancy test and clutching my gooey not-even-pink-yet baby to my chest, I began my role as her mama. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment I became a mama and even now the experience of being a mama is constantly changing. My role as Sierra’s mama evolves as my daughter grows.

Sierra was born sure of what she wanted and demanding about how and when she wanted it. While this frustrates me at times, I hope she continues to have a clear understanding of what she wants in life and I hope she always demands what she deserves. I want her to stay true to herself, because she shouldn’t have to change for anyone. I never want her to hide how intelligent she is, how vulnerable she may be, or how deeply she cares about something or someone.

Sierra has taught me so much in the last 20 months. She has taught me difficult lessons, like how little sleep a person can function on, how much liquid a teeny baby can puke up, and how complicated a three item trip to the grocery store can be now. She has also taught me about beauty and patience by stopping to examine every single flower in a row of forty. She has taught me about the importance of human interaction and kindness by constantly waving and chatting with strangers in the coffee shop, on the bus, and at the store. Mostly Sierra has taught me about love, specifically the incredible ability of a mother to love her daughter more every day, even when her love felt overwhelmingly intense from the beginning.

I hope in return I can teach her many things in the years to come, but there is one important and complicated lesson I have been turning over in my mind lately. I want Sierra to know that she is beautiful, literally stunning, exactly the way she is, but I also want her to know that being beautiful isn’t that important. I want her to feel confident and good about her body, but I also want her to realize that her intelligence, her kindness and compassion, and her fiercely feisty spirit matter more than her mile long lashes, her deep brown eyes, or her rosebud lips. I want her to be the kind of girl who knows she is pretty but doesn’t think too much about it because she’s so busy pursuing personal interests, working on her academic subjects, and forming friendships with people who are similarly grounded.

Mostly I hope Sierra will feel more happiness than sadness, more satisfaction than disappointment, and more love than anger or jealousy.

Mother’s Day Guest Post: Adriana of Just BY Living
May 5, 2011, 3:19 pm
Filed under: Family, Guest Blogger, Inspiration | Tags: ,

Over the next few days we will be sharing with you some posts from guest bloggers. We chose women we admire and respect to share with you their thoughts on motherhood. Each has compiled a little list of advice for their child (or children). We hope you enjoy it and would love to know….what do you hope to pass on to your kids?

Our first is from Adriana of Just By Living

I love being a mother. It has defined me. I don’t believe that something “changed” in me when I had my son. More so, I feel like something was awoken. I was always his mother deep down and it was just waiting to come to surface. Being a mom, HIS mom, did not alter me but bring out the best possible version of myself. I never knew I could be so good, so healing, caring, devoted, or loving. My love knows no limits or boundaries. It evolves and moves forward with him as he evolves and grows.

You know that expression I loved you before I knew you? Well, I loved him before he existed at all. I loved him when he was a dream, a wish, a whisper. Now, he is my reality. That is what I am celebrating on Mother’s Day. A happier life, a lighter life, a life with a little boy who was made from my body, who holds my hand through the day, and wraps his little fingers into my hair during the night.

Here is my advice for my little man…

Never be afraid of failure, some of life’s best lessons are learned from it.

Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.

Never look back but always remember where you came from.

Put the toilet seat down. Keep books by your bed. Don’t bother with cologne. (Any girl who really loves you will like the way you smell without it)

Travel. and when you do, make like the locals.

Be a gentlemen. There is nothing appealing about a man who doesn’t respect women.

Fall in love. Get married. Have babies. Then, be an active parent. A family is something you will NEVER regret.

To be honest, I don’t know much kiddo, but I do know that being true to yourself, honesty, and self-respect will get you far. Be present in the moment. Life is not found on facebook or in email but right in front of you. Pay attention. The best moments in life slip away quickly. Enjoy them. The smallest things are what make a person truly happy. The smell of the ocean, a gentle summer breeze, the moment before it rains, the curve of a lovers neck, rich hot cocoa, dancing in a crowd full of people you don’t know but feel connected to, road trips, singing at the top of your lungs, BBQs, skinny dipping…these are the things that make you feel alive. No job, or amount of money, or fancy house.

Most importantly, don’t forget to call your mother.