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As I reflect back over my journey in mommyhood, there are several lessons that I’ve learned along the way through experience and through the most important ladies in my life. This blog is dedicated to those special women. I would not be the person, the wife, and the mama I am today without you. I am forever grateful for your friendship and wisdom. Here are the ladies who have influenced me along the way:

Mama – thank you for giving me life. thank you for loving me, even when I didn’t make it easy for you. thank you for teaching me to be strong, courageous, and giving. thank you for teaching me that part of loving your kids is loving yourself. thank you for teaching me that you don’t have to give birth to someone for them to be one of your kids. thank you for loving Jud and for loving our hopefully-soon-to-be boys just as much without even meeting them yet. I love you, Mama.

Gayling – thank you for treating me like I’m your own kid. thank you for loving my daddy. thank you for loving my little boy. thank you for supporting me in all of my decisions. i love you!

Patty – you have loved me like i was your own daughter from the moment you met me. thank you. thank you for raising my husband to respect women and to treat them with care. thank you for making my own dressing without onions at Thanksgiving and Christmas, not because I asked but because you love me. you are one of the kindest, most loving people I have ever known. your love for your boys is inspiring. i love you, Patty.

Jess – you have one of the most genuinely sweet spirits that I have ever had the privilege of knowing. you are kind, patient, and wise. thank you for teaching me that raising kids is an honor and a joy. thank you for teaching me that you can be a strong woman, while following your husband.  you are an amazing mama and wifey, Jess. i love you.

Lori – you have taught me so much about motherhood. i will never forget the phone call i made to you shortly after we moved back to nola. Jud was about 9 months. He was cutting teeth and had kept me up all night (literally). I had just started back to grad school. I was exhausted. Jud was whiney and clingy. I called you and said, “I can totally see how those moms who drive their kids into lakes and such get to that point.” you laughed and said, “yep. rough day?” thank you for allowing me to be open and honest with you about everything. and for loving me anyway. you are hilarious, kind, trustworthy, honest, loving, and my best friend. you have taught me that you don’t lose mommy points if you stick your kid in front of the tv so you can have an hour (or 2) of peace. you have taught me what it means to fight for your kids and that it just may be the most important thing you ever do. thanks for being “on-call” for my numerous thousands of questions. you have taught me that stubbornness is a great quality to have as a mom. you are one of the strongest moms i know. and i love you more than you know.

Julie – wow. you have provided me with sanity during my chaotic weeks. i know zuzus and bachelor probably seems trivial to everyone else. but many times, it was the highlight of my week. you provided me with adult conversation and the opportunity to let my brain take a break. you’re my NOLA bff. you have taught me that it doesn’t make you a terrible mother to “take a break” from your kiddie and it is sometimes necessary. you have allowed me to vent without judging me. though there are things i do differently than you, you never judge how i raise Jud. you have encouraged me and loved me at my worst. i am infinitely thankful for you. i love you, girl.

Emily – my favorite technological friend, where do i even begin with you? you made my nighttime feedings with Jud tolerable because i knew you would be waiting with a Co story. that definitely solidified my love for you. you have taught me that honesty is super important with your kiddies, even if it makes things awkward and uncomfortable for you. i will never forget nursing Jud at your house, Co raises up the nursing cover, and says, “Hey! What’s he doing under there?!” and that’s not even the most awkward conversation you’ve had with him. thank you for realizing the importance of teaching your kids. you have taught me that you can find teaching opportunities for your kid in everything (including Star Wars and Boy Meets World). in fact, teaching your kid through unconventional methods actually earns you mommy points. thank you for being a mom and a friend of sound advice. thank you for being ever hilarious and encouraging me when i feel like a failure (even when my kid falls off the bed at 2 months…how you spun that one around into a positive, i still don’t know). you are amazing and i seriously don’t know what i would do without you in my life. i love you, friend.

Ashley – you have taught me so much, i’m not quite sure where to begin and i know i’ll leave something off. you have taught me that my dreams and goals in life are just as important as my husband’s. i have had the desire to adopt kids since i was in high school, but you have taught me that it is possible to love and raise kids who look nothing like you on the outside. you have taught me that having a mini-me does not make you a mother. you have taught me that it doesn’t make you a bad mama when you get frustrated with your kiddies, it makes you human. i am so grateful to have you in my life. i love you dearly.

Carianne – i know you’re not a mama yet. but you have become one of my best friends and you have taught me much. i just wanted to let you know that i love you and appreciate your friendship more than you will ever know. and to return the favor, whenever you do have kids, i will make sure all the black bags are gone from your house:)

Maw – I know you don’t have internet, but i couldn’t write a note about moms without including you. My amazing grandmother, you have taught me the power and importance of prayer. I would not be who i am today without you. my fondest memory of coming to your house (in addition to the biscuits and gravy) is falling asleep to the sound of your prayers. thank you for being an amazing prayer warrior. thank you for never compromising and for being a Godly example for me. thank you for loving me more than i can comprehend and for lifting me up in prayer always and especially when my world was crumbling around me.  i love you, maw. i hope to be half the mother/grandmother you are one day.

 

To all of my other family and friends who are moms – thank you. Thank you for your example to me. Thank you for your love. thank you for the lessons in mommyhood that you have shared with me – the good, the bad, the ugly, the hilarious. i would not be who i am without any of you and i hope to be half the moms you are someday. i love you all. thank you. thank you. thank you.

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