Do you remember?
Do you remember what your mom was like when you were young? I do.
I remember her tucking me in and kissing me good night every single evening.
I remember her helping me with homework.
I remember her crying with me when my heart got broken.
I remember her laughing with me when we had something to celebrate.
I remember her wiping my forehead with a cold cloth when I was sick.
I remember her always being by my side.
But, most of all, I remember HER.
(Photo: George Marks via Getty Images)
We can be pretty hard on ourselves, can't we?
We wonder if we are doing enough, volunteering enough, making enough, crafting enough, cleaning enough, mothering enough.
We question ourselves, don't we?
Are we enough as moms? Are we doing a good enough job? Are our kids missing out? Are our kids doing too much? Is the house clean enough? Are the dishes done? Did we plan an activity for the next big holiday? The list goes on and on my friends.
Why do we do this to ourselves?
(Photo: Ivanjevic via Getty Images)
What will they remember?
I hope that when my daughter looks back she remembers the person I was. I hope she cherishes the memories we built together. I want her to recall the precious, everyday moments that defined our relationship.
At the end of the day the "things" don't matter. I don't want my daughter to remember these "things" -- I want her to remember me. My heart, my soul and the love I have for her. This is what I want her to remember.
They love us when we are at our best, but they love us just the same when we're not.
When she looks back on her childhood she's not going to remember the pile of laundry on the couch, other than she loved leaping in it and laughing. She's not going to remember a sink full of dishes, she'll remember eating our meals as a family; our hearts and bellies full.
She's not going to remember if Sally's mom brought homemade, gluten-free, organic cupcakes and her own mom brought a bag of store-bought cookies. She will remember that I was there to pick her up and listen to every detail of her day.
(Photo: Liudmylasupynska via Getty Images)
Why do we do this to ourselves? Beat ourselves up? Drag ourselves to exhaustion to be Pinterest perfect?
Here's the thing... none of us are perfect and quite frankly, do we really want to be? The mess and the chaos? This is what motherhood is. It's what being a family is about. And it's the memories we make with our children that they will remember.
Our kids love us. Unconditionally.
They love us when we are at our best, but they love us just the same when we're not. They don't care if we're frazzled and messy. They look up at us and say, "I look just like you, Mama." This. This is what they will remember.
So, the next time you beat yourself up because you didn't get that "thing" done on your list, count up the cuddles, the kisses, the moments and the endless "I love you's."
This is the list we should always remember. Because this is the list our children will remember.
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Why We Love Her: She's refreshingly honest and forthcoming about her life, parenthood, and relationships on her site Dooce. We're not the only ones who appreciate that: Heather has built an empire out of her funny, real experiences. Her Mom's Advice: "My mother worked her way up to become regional director of the Western US at Avon. I once observed at a Christmas party she threw how she interacted with people. Every time she stood up to speak she made that person feel they were the most important in room. She was purposeful about doing that, so those she works with feel that their work is important. I think about that a lot when I'm interacting with fans. I want them to know their story is just as important as my own." Photo: Heather Armstrong
Why We Love Her: The journalist, editor, podcaster, and pie-chart artist keeps us informed with her weekly New York magazine columns about gender, media, tech, and more. Plus, her hand-drawn pie charts are thoroughly entertaining. Her Mom's Advice: "My mom always says, 'Everything's better in the morning.' This might seem like small advice, but has gotten me through many tough moments of conflict and self-doubt late at night. Maybe I've repeated it to myself so much that I've become a morning person. I almost always wake up feeling calmer and clearer." Photo: Lara Shipley via annfriedman.com
Why We Love Her: The San Francisco blogger turned a love of fashion into a full-time job with her blog Gal Meets Glam which reaches thousands of fans daily. Her Mom's Advice: "My mom has taught me so many lessons. She is the type of person that's protective and tough. She taught my sisters and brothers and I the value of a strong work ethic. As a single, working mom she taught us to never rely on anyone but yourself. If you don't know something go teach it to yourself. If you get a handout you'll never value the results as much as if you do it yourself." Photo: Julia Engel
Why We Love Her: Her career is truly impressive. After working at prestigious companies such as LVMH, Bain & Company, Estee Lauder, and Carlyle Private Equity, Pauline is now a faculty member at Harvard Business School. Her Mom's Advice: "My mom wanted both her daughters to be substantial women. She urged us to read, ask questions, show curiosity, explore the world, question conventions, develop our minds and use our imaginations. Thanks to her, I haven't stopped. Deep down I have the confidence that - no matter what challenges or setbacks I may confront - my judgment, agility, problem-solving abilities and ingenuity will steer me well. Thanks to my mom's teachings, I now live without fear." Photo: Shoptiques
Why We Love Her: She's the seriously stylish founder and partner at Gogoluxe, a company that provides cool, creative, custom services and market intel to retailers and brands. Her Mom's Advice: "From a very young age, my mom always instilled in me the notion that I could accomplish anything I set my mind to. She always told me to reach for the moon, but to be sure to do so with kindness, respect, and integrity. Accomplishments are of course great, but not at the expense of being a good decent person." Photo: Instagram @gogoluxe
Why We Love Her: Her website VandiFair is a bright, refreshing part of our day. This Texan's positivity is contagious, and that's worth saluting. Her Mom's Advice: My mother is truly my best friend and there are so many things that she has taught me throughout my life, but the one that probably shaped me the most is her encouragement for myself and siblings to believe in magic. My mother always strove to protect and preserve our childhood sense that we could do and be anything we wanted - that nothing was impossible. While some of that sense of magic she instilled inevitably faded when I entered the real world of adulthood, that childhood sense of believing in the impossible still exists in me today. It's the part of me that dreams big, chases those dreams, sees the good and looks on the bright side, and I owe it all to the amazing woman I'm lucky to call my mother." Photo: vandifair.com
Why We Love Her: The strategist, author, and innovator travels the country to spread the word on the art of social media. She's also the director of digital marketing for Kreussler Inc., covering online brand management and as well as traditional marketing. Her Mom's Advice: "The best advice that my mom ever gave me was really leading by example. She taught me that women can do anything from fixing things to moving big furniture to supporting the family. Girl power was the way things got done in my family!" Photo: pegfitzpatrick.com
Why We Love Her: Having built her brand from scratch, Vera is one of the top digital influencers today. Her blogs are great sources for travel tips, style pointers, and product reviews. She's funny too - look for Vera on TLC's new show #WhatSheSaid. Her Mom's Advice: "The most valuable lesson I learned from my mother was how to love my children. Growing up, no matter what life threw our way, my mother always enveloped me with love and support. With three children of my own, I'm the one now giving endless hugs and kisses to my brood. All that affection and attention comes from a place of joy - of happy beginnings. I'm so blessed to have those memories to pull from." Photo: Vera Sweeney
Why We Love Her: An enviable collection of shoes is not all the Texas Sea of Shoes blogger has going for her. One of the original fashion bloggers, she started as a teen and now runs her own multifaceted company. Her Mom's Advice: "My mother is someone who is firmly grounded in her own beliefs and sense of self. Truly someone who marches to the beat of her own drum. The best advice she's given me is that your first instinct is usually the right one. There have been many times in my life that I've had to put that advice to the test, and it almost always ends up being right in the end. " Photo: seaofshoes.com
Why We Love Her: She started Family Focus Blog in 2011, expecting little to come of it. Now the Nashville mom's site gets over 85,000 monthly page views and she's turned blogging into a successful career. Her Mom's Advice: "'Do onto others as you want others to do onto you' - for me that really makes a lot of sense. On an everyday basis it is important for me and my kids to remember that. It's a guiding principle for everyday life. I ask my children, 'is that something you want them to do to you?' it helps to see things from someone else's perspective." Photo: Scarlet Paolicchi
Why We Love Her: The publisher & CEO of Cool Mom Picks has earned thousands of fans (including us) thanks to her funny, un-precious approach to parenting. Her Mom's Advice: "Without my mom teaching me to seek out my passion, I wouldn't be where I am. I started as a music therapist and ended up teaching, a lot of people questioned why I would start a blog. But my passion has always been supporting my community, it's really not so far off from teaching. My mom taught me to find passion in what you do, despite any restraints." Photo: Kristenchase.net
Why We Love Her: She can put an outfit together like nobody's business. Her lifestyle blog is full of outfit inspiration as well as mouth-watering recipes that are actually easy to make. Her Mom's Advice: "My mom always told me there's no problem that can't be solved with a new outfit. Growing up, whether it was from being picked on at school to not getting cast in the Nutcracker Ballet, whenever I was sad or upset or just had a bad day my mom would take me shopping for a new outfit. Even now as an adult she still finds ways to cheer me up like this. It has so little to do with the actual act of shopping, but being able to go into the following day, wearing my new look, with a smile on my face and feeling confident and beautiful." Photo: Meghan Jones
Why We Love Her: The uber-stylish Aussie is a street style star who parlayed her social influence into Zanita Studio, a growing creative company. Her Mom's Advice: "The best advice my mother has ever given me is 'being rich in your life is about love, happiness and family. It has nothing to do with money or possessions.' It's a great reminder in knowing what's important about life. Photo: Zanita.com
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