I heard someone say Mom, and it finally sank in

I’ve partnered with Minute Maid and Socialstars for this sponsored post to help parents realize they’re #DoinGood

As a working mom, I have to watch her wave goodbye from the front window every weekday. There are times I miss seeing her with her bedhead when she wakes up, or rock him to sleep after his bedtime feeding.

With every day that passes, they grow up before my eyes. She turned 3 this past weekend, and it feels like I’ve blinked and I’ve gone from stroking the soft fuzz on her head to brushing through the tangles before bed.

It was early 2011 when my husband and I decided we wanted to start our family. That year was filled with tears, triumphs, and more emotions than I even knew I had. After nearly a year, we finally saw a plus sign.

We spent the next year documenting kicks, heartbeats, and a rapidly growing belly. But while each day seemed to drag on, I honestly have no idea where the time went. It’s now three years later and I’m finally starting to digest all of our moments, and not just the big milestones, but the small yet mighty moments like when he learned to drink from a straw, or the time she swam for the first time with floaties.

Siblings

I was once stuck in traffic on a Saturday night. There was an accident on the highway and all the cars were at a standstill. I don’t know why I remember this so vividly, but I recall thinking how all the cars on that highway were headed to different places, eventually in all different directions; but there we were, all in the same place, at the same time. It’s as if the world stopped for 12 minutes and we were all together; for no other reason than that we decided to take that highway, that night, at that time.

That’s how I felt when I heard it. It’s like I finally took a second to really hear it.

We were at the beach last week and I was sitting in the sand with Little Man. She was in the ocean with Daddy. Then I heard “Moooom.” I’ve said it thousands of times when calling for my own mom as a child, but this time when I heard it, my head turned, the world stopped, and it was as if someone was calling my name, screaming “Ashley!”

It was then that I realized that my identity is no longer just an individual. I’m not Ashley to everyone. I’m Mom to two little beings, and that is an honor. I call motherhood an elite club, but I never really felt like a member; not until I really stopped to acknowledge all that has happened in the past 3 years and 9 months.

We took a family vacation this past week and it was refreshing. I unplugged (like actually unplugged). I didn’t respond to blog email, I didn’t write, I didn’t check my work email, and I only hopped on Facebook once (seriously.). It was amazing, and much needed. It wasn’t just me that needed it; my husband and kids needed me to unplug too.

Beach family

While we didn’t need a summer vacation to come together, it was the perfect avenue to open our eyes to the importance of spending time as a family, unplugged.

Summer can be challenging with kids home from school, scorching hot temperatures, and late bedtime (thank you summer solstice). But it’s the perfect time to acknowledge the great job you are doing as a parent, and acknowledge others who are doing a good job.

Minute Maid is encouraging moms and dads to call out other parents and let them know that no matter how defeated he or she feels as a parent, they are #doingood. Today, I, along with Minute Maid, challenge you to unplug and pat yourself on the back.

And if you feel like unplugging and making a treat with the kiddos today, check out this video from Hey Kayli and learn how to make a yummy snack! Share it with a friend who can use some inspiration for creating a little extra fun and let them know that they too are #doingood

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Ashley traded Prada for pacis in 2012 when she became a member of the elite club of motherhood. She is married to her high school sweetheart of nearly 15 years and together they have two toddlers - "Bear" and "Little Man." She spends her days as a marketing professional and nights writing this blog. In her [not so] spare time, she enjoys reading trashy tabloids, large glasses of buttery chardonnay, and shopping clearance racks.
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