When you’re in the middle of momming, it’s hard to find a moment to just stop and think. It’s actually even hard to stop and pee, but that’s a different story.

Truth is, sometimes you need to reflect on where you are, to appreciate just how far you’ve come. What you’ve learned. How you’ve grown. What you wish you would have known before you started this crazy journey.

And sometimes reflecting really helps you to move forward in an inspired way.

So in honor of this upcoming Mother’s Day, I asked friends of mine who are moms—and who have been so from anywhere from a period of months to decades—about what their experience in motherhood has been like. What surprised them the most? What was the hardest? What did they learn about themselves? Anything went.

Each mom approached it from a different angle, so all of the answers are a little different, but they all confirm we, as parents, learn as much about ourselves through the experience of raising children as those kids do about themselves while growing up.

I hope you enjoy the answers and the insights. I know I did, and it confirms what we have known all along: Motherhood isn’t easy, but it is the best.

And please! Chime in in the Comments section and tell me, what is the biggest lesson that motherhood has taught you?

 

Melissa, mom of Reese (5) and Carys (2):

 

“The most surprising thing I discovered as a new mom was actually the change I saw in myself.  While I hate to admit it, I had always been the type of person who cared (a little too much) about what other people thought of me.  Suddenly, I was in charge of this new life and suddenly I didn’t care about others opinions.  I didn’t care what I looked like, what people thought about me nursing my baby in public, what part of me I accidentally exposed while doing said nursing or whether I had puke down the front of my shirt.  I didn’t even give a damn if I smelled like Butt Paste (or worse..typically it was much worse).  It was almost a freeing experience.  What others thought didn’t  matter as much anymore.  All that mattered was that I do everything humanly possible to keep this new life…well, living and thriving.”

 

***

Shannon, mom of Cole (16) and Maura (13):

 

“The most surprising thing about being a mom was the day that I realized that I raised two amazing children. Different sexes, different ages, different personalities and different thoughts and dreams. But I raised them to love each other.  Watching my kids respect each other, love each other differences and truly ask for each other opinions, made me feel more blessed than anything else I could have accomplished in my life without them. So Happy Mother’s Day to me!  I always felt I was put here to be a Mom and I am blessed to be theirs.”

 

***

Elysa, mom of Jacob (5) and Jordan (2):

 

“I never knew how fast I’d fall in love with my children. I’ll never forget the first moment I held my newborn son close to my chest, kissed his adorable little nose, cradled his tiny feet in my hand and gazed into his eyes. He looked up at me and although it might have been a little gas ?, he smiled. Even with his blurry, unfocused vision, he knew I was his Mom, and I was hooked.”

 

***

 

Hope to see you soon with Part Two! 🙂

 

 

Sonni Abatta is an Orlando lifestyle and mom blogger and a mother of (almost!) 3. Please reach out with any story ideas or collaborations to Sonni@SonniAbatta.com. Oh, and you can send free pizza vouchers too. She’d love that.