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Challenge: I'm a Great Mom Because...

I'm A Great Mom Because ... I'm Old

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Well, not very old, but definitely older. Right after college, when all my friends and my younger sister were celebrating engagements, I was busy concentrating on my career. Then when they were devoting themselves to planning weddings and starting families, I was busy working and traveling. I didn’t have a huge desire to settle down, move to the suburbs with a two car garage and fill it with toys and a minivan. I wanted more. Hmmm. More, I thought, was seeing the world, partying with my friends all night, dating up a storm, answering to no one but myself, sleeping Saturday away if I pleased and hopping into my car and heading somewhere, anywhere, any time.

Then I met my husband. At 39, it was not the first marriage proposal I got but it was the first one I accepted. My husband made me want to settle down. He made me want to have dinner at home every night. He made a house home. We talked about having children but I was fine either way. He had a son and that was good enough for me. I got to be an instant mom. Then I got pregnant. We were trying but it still came as quite the shock. I’d never been responsible for anyone but myself and now I had this little life inside me. At 41, the life inside me made his way from my belly into my arms, and my heart would never be the same.

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So you see when I say I’m a good mom because I’m old, it’s because I’ve been around the block. I know stress. I know how fast our time on this planet goes. When my son says, “Mom, let’s play Legos” or, “Please come play a game of basketball with me in the backyard,” I throw off my heels and lace up my sneakers because I know that in a blink of an eye my little basketball player will be packing his bags for college. When he asks me to lay with him until he falls asleep, I fall asleep by his side. When he wants to stay up all night talking, I listen. And when he wants to invite 5 of his closest friends for a sleepover, we lay out the sleeping bags and break out the snacks.

When my son was about 4 years old and running in and out of our house from a muddy yard as I was trying to clean for a party, a song I’d never heard before came on the radio. It was called “You’re Gonna Miss This” by Trace Adkins. I listened to the lyrics. A tear rolled down my face. I looked at the muddy steps on the carpet I’d cleaned repeatedly and realized at that moment, I’m gonna miss this. I haven’t let the lyrics to that song leave my mind. And I haven’t let a minute go by that I don’t appreciate the miraculous gift of being a mom, especially an "old" mom.

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