• http://www.heypeaches.com Melissa

    In 1st grade, a friend and I were applying lip-gloss to one another while we road home on the bus, but the bus driver yelled at us to cut it out. Later that evening, our parents got a call from him. He warned them that we were going to turn out to be lesbians. Were we making kissy faces, too? Did we actually smooch one another? I sure don’t remember, but, as six year old girls, anything is possible. And, regardless of if we did, did I mention that we were six? In any case, I still think that is the strangest case of over-reaction I’ve ever been a part of.

  • http://perksofbeingme.blogspot.com Perksofbeingme

    Thanks for the hope. I agree that right now, the knowledge that someone else made it is all that it takes. That’s what manages to keep me going, to keep me sane.

  • Anonymous

    Like so many others said, thanks for the reminders. I know that I love my 4-week-old, but I did not know how hard and complicated and not perfect motherhood would be.

  • Trish

    Beautiful post – My son is 11 and this summer I’ve learned what an awesome person (not just an awesome kid) he is becoming. His baby days were not my favorite and I can say I’m not as maternal as most-some days were so long and I couldn’t wait for them to end. But the years are short and it does get better. Well said, and thank you.

  • Anna

    Oh thank you. I’m three months pregnant and this is one of my biggest fears.

  • http://science-share.blogspot.com cahya

    A great blog.

  • http://honeyscybercash.blogspot.com Honey

    I know exactly what you mean, it does get better. Throughout all of the 6 years I have been a mother, there were times when I would say it has to get better than this. The crying, tantrums, teething and no sleeping days bring you to tears at times, but yes, it does get better. My daughter will be 4 next month and our conversations are better than I have with most adults I encounter. As a matter of fact, all three of my kids carry great conversation skills.
    I briefly went through post-partum depression after all of their births and let me tell you, you really question your abilities to be in charge of anyone, nonetheless a dependent baby. Also, for me, the ages of 3-4 with my children was so much worse than the “terrible 2′s”.

    However, almost magically,there is one day that comes along where you look at your child or children and go, “Oh Shit, that’s what it’s all about!”

  • Krista

    I love this
    You have a really wonderful way with words

    Just starting to feel the same now with my two-year-old.

    The total miracle of her being able to tell me how she feels about something!! (instead of just screaming and writhing around) Nothing has ever been better or more exciting for me than the friendship her and i are building now…..

    So many women seem to want another baby right away….I just want to be more and more amazed at the little person growing in front of me….

    Keep writing about Leta…it’s always been and always will be my favourite part of your website….screw Kathie Lee G
    :)

  • http://www.sighingsoftly.blogspot.com April

    After over five years of infertility, I finally have a three month old son. There are some days that are so hard… with the non-stop screaming thanks to colic that I think – I can’t do this. I wasn’t cut out for this.

    Thank you for the reminder that the wait was worth it. I’m going to cuddle him now.

  • http://www.survivethemayhem.com SAHM: Surviving Assorted Home Mayhem

    Thank you for that. You are so right- it does indeed get better. As a mommy who’s already got one nearly 16 years old as well as one who’s a terribly cranky 23 month old {& went thru PPD w/ both}, it’s important to remember. Each day that my darling little one puts me through the ringer I do know there is light at the end of tunnel.

  • Amy

    Thank you. Reminders like this are so important… One of mine is a beautiful picture of my 2 year old that I keep on my phone. He looks simply content and sweet and loved. I take it out and have a look when he’s acting like the 2-Year-Old-Terror most parents have experienced. It’s like counting to 10, but just replacing the numbers with his big, round eyes.

    Remember, the journey is the reward.

  • http://humbleorigins.blogspot.com/ tj

    …Simply, perfectly, put.

    …Bless you for that Miss Dooce… :o )

  • http://zeghsy.blogspot.com zeghsy

    way to go. she’s just as lucky as you… as for that lime lip gloss, um, well, it may not survive. sorry.

  • http://www.boxofchocolatesblog.blogspot.com Nicole

    THANK YOU! My daughter just turned 13 mo. and I love her more than anything on this earth but I still get that feeling sometimes like what the hell am I doing and am I even doing it right.
    Your stories make me feel so at home and I realize more and more on a daily basis that “normal” is only a setting on the washing machine!

  • http://beckycochrane.livejournal.com Becky

    Beautiful.

  • daniele

    Thank you for sharing yourself with us. It is always comforting to know that no one is alone in these things.

    The best part is that not only can you make it through all of the pull all your hair out days in the beginning, to walk into each coming phase with the strength that comes from fighting the bloody battles of motherhood wars side by side with your child and now you are both strong enough to take on the world together. It just keeps getting better and better.
    I know that I fought a war and managed to survive with my son by my side. We fought the battle together and we WON! We can be happy and smile most everyday. I fear puberty and teenage years but I’ve seen hell and I know it won’t take me.

  • m

    It gets better..

    Your words have helped me hang on today.

    I’m a 21 year old single mom with a 4 month old daughter.

    Went to bed last night not knowing if I could do another day at this whole “mothering” gig that I am obviously so not suited for…fairly confident that I wouldn’t make it.

    Still not sure I will, but today you made me smile (in the midst of an eternally screaming infant who sounds like a chewbaca action figure with dying batteries).

    Thanks for the hope, Heather.

  • Sarah

    Preach it, Sister.

    You make such a difference in this world by sharing so honestly.

  • http://myspace.com/ehwaz Gen

    I understand what you are talking about..even though I’m not a parent. All my friends have young children under 10 years (the oldest is 8 and the youngest is roughly 3 1/2 months for being born). I always joke with them and say going to their house is instant birth control with all the sassying, crying and screaming. One friend lost her baby’s father (soon-to-be husband) when her child was only a few months old. She says she doesn’t have the mother gene and that she is afraid that her son will be damaged by the absence of his father. I have told her while it is a long hard road to raise her child by herself, she can do it and the child will be fine. Your story backed what I always said to her..even if you don’t think you can do it, a true mother always will continue on. Leta is a lucky girl to have you as a mom :)

  • Heather

    Thank you.

    I really needed to hear this. Today.

    Seriously.

  • Kimberly C

    Do you really mean it? She’s 19 months now- maybe one day she will grow out of the hell that is whining and screaming when I won’t let her watch That God Damned Little Mermaid AGAIN, for the fiftieth time in a week? Please, tell me that every day until it stops.

  • Hope

    Thank you so much for sharing your bad times so that others may have hope (no pun intended). Each period of childhood has it’s own trials, but now with three children who all have (remarkably) reached adulthood, I can honestly say IT WAS WORTH IT every step of the way. The fact that I was able to oversee the advance of these at-on-time blobs of spit up, poop and snot through yes, wanting to recycle discarded licorice sticks, not kiss ‘yucky’ boys, then WANTING to kiss those same boys, many, many nights waiting up and trying not to freak out ten minutes after their curfew hour – and all three are now astonishingly semi-serious working and self-sufficient adults with none of the drug problems & unwanted pregnancies that seem to be my family’s legacy. God knows our limitations (which is why I have three such great kids – I’d be in jail for murder if I’d had someone f my friend’s kids).

    And remember to keep all of these so you can read them when your little darling turns 13 or 14 – it IS worth it, but it sure ain’t always easy.

  • Lisa

    Kathie Lee Gifford, suck it!

  • http://nurseonadiet.typepad.com Amber

    Heather,
    I too suffered through horrible PPD and postpartum OCD when my son was born 2.5 years ago. I thought that I would never get that ‘mommy’ feeling and that he would always be this thing that I had to share my day with. Sure he was cute but I was definitely not in love with him. Now at 2 and a half? He is the absolute love of my life and I’m addicted to his hugs and his “love you mommy” I do still get some of the old anxious feelings about not being good enough or not loving him enough but not nearly as much as I get the good feelings. I would laugh at people who would tell me it would get better in the throes of it all but, IT DOES GET BETTER! One day you just wake up and actually look forward to getting out of bed and starting your day. Thank you for posting this and I’m so happy you are where you are. Lita is a lucky girl.

  • http://www.flickr.com/kimandisabel Kim

    This is So. True. When I gave birth to Isabel they put her in my arms and my first thought was, “Whoa. Weird.” Remember when Miranda on Sex and the City said, “It’s like a giraffe just walked in the room,” or something like that? I totally got what she said. And now, when my 6 year old writes me notes that say, “I luv you Momee,” I realize that for every day I wanted to jab an ice pick into my temple it was all worth it for that minute.

  • http://nurseonadiet.typepad.com Amber

    Heather,
    I too suffered through horrible PPD and postpartum OCD when my son was born 2.5 years ago. I thought that I would never get that ‘mommy’ feeling and that he would always be this thing that I had to share my day with. Sure he was cute but I was definitely not in love with him. Now at 2 and a half? He is the absolute love of my life and I’m addicted to his hugs and his “love you mommy” I do still get some of the old anxious feelings about not being good enough or not loving him enough but not nearly as much as I get the good feelings. I would laugh at people who would tell me it would get better in the throes of it all but, IT DOES GET BETTER! One day you just wake up and actually look forward to getting out of bed and starting your day. Thank you for posting this and I’m so happy you are where you are. Lita is a lucky girl.

  • http://lulusaysit.com/ Julie

    Your blog is very inspirational. Thank you for always being honest and funny :)

  • Anonymous

    Thank you. I’ve been crying all day, at home alone with my 14 month old son. I needed to read your words.

  • Meg

    Thank you, Heather. I get so sad when I look at photos of my son when he was a baby because I remember how numb and awful I felt. I worry that I missed the best part of his life, when he was cute and cuddly and just, well, a baby. You’re telling me it’s o.k. I didn’t enjoy it, and it’s o.k. to look back and photos and enjoy it now. And it’s o.k. to LET GO the guilt I feel for not enjoying it back then.

    I haven’t looked at my five year old’s baby photos for a very long time because I feel so guilty when I do. I’m going to go do that now.

  • http://www.thekeelerskorner.blogspot.com Amanda

    I hear you. My daughter is 4 and I am truly starting to connect with her and have “real” conversations. It is amazing.
    I am sure this post helped out a lot of people.

  • http://kurthcorner.blogspot.com Val

    We have a 5 year old. You understand. I love you!

  • http://greatdayinmaine.blogspot.com Leesavee

    Thank you, Heather. That was beautiful. Except for the “worms of green snot” part, but that is a visual I’ll keep with me for a while.

  • Kelly

    I’m not a parent, but you really are an inspiration. I love reading your blog, I look forward to it every day. So, thank you for putting yourself out there.

  • http://icelandweatherreport.com Alda

    Beautiful.

  • Clare

    Heather:

    You are so beautiful to me!

    Clare

  • Sarah

    Yes, it does get better! I so wish I could have back the early days with my first baby, the days I spent crying all day and missing work and wondering why I didn’t feel the way I was “suppose” to feel. Now he is 9 and the early days with my others were different. I look at him every day and marvel and the little man I brought into this world. I have a good friend who just had her first baby, I am linking this post to her right now.

  • Kitty

    Wait until she hits puberty.

    I too felt like that, when my daughter was born that is. I thought I had something wrong with me. It does get better. Then hormones start acting all funny making the once fun and loving kid turn into a PMS monster. Then you have to go through hell all over again.

  • Erin

    That is such an awesome post I have a son who in two months will be a year old and sometime he drives me mad and then we sit here together and we read your blog and he dose things like this http://mookiesmadness.blogspot.com/ lol and reminds me that its ok and that it will be.

  • Elisabeth

    I’m not a mother, so I haven’t been through post partum depression, but reading this made my eyes well up with tears. I love to way you love your daughter and I admire your ability to be honest.

    I think this is an important message to people who aren’t parents, as well as those who are. Whatever you’re going through, it’ll be okay. We get through it when we have each other.

    Thank you.

  • http://www.simplemom.net Toblerone

    This, to me, is my favorite post of yours so far.

    Thank you for this.

  • http://stacyopolis.com Stacy

    It does get better – I said something similar to my sister-in-law who right now is struggling with a very active 11-month-old. I get tired after spending just a few hours with the little munchkin, you forget how difficult it is when they’re young.

    My 5 year old got off the kindergarten bus one day asking if she could bring some lip gloss to school so that she and her friends could pretend to be “sassy teenagers”. I was like, “Whaaaaat?? What happened to my baby?”

  • http://deescribbler.typepad.com/my_weblog/ Dee

    I love this post. It highlights what no non-parent can possibly understand, the thrill of seeing this little person bloom right in front of you, and you know you’re witnessing a miracle.

    My kids are both adopted. My moments like this are still real and amazing. I remember the day my 13 year old Russian daughter learned enough English I could tell her a joke and make her laugh. I remember the day my 10 year old son said to me, in English, finally, “I love you, Mom.”

    I am sort of puzzled about the Twizzler comment though. I have lived in the South all my life but I don’t let my kids pick up things off the ground and eat them. I don’t know anyone here who allows that.

    I had to teach my kids, who spent years in orphanages, how to use a napkin, and to wash hands before eating. I am appalled every time they tell me about the hygiene standards in their birth countries. We don’t eat dirt Twizzlers, though…. ??!!

  • http://www.morecheese.typepad.com Marie

    I’ve been trying to have a child for three years now, and your post struck me because so often, we baby-quest’ers get the idea that everyone else has it so much easier than us. I’m sorry you had such a tough time after Leta’s birth. And I love how awesome you are as a mom now — still keepin’ it real (and hilarious), but with that mommy-love you once feared you wouldn’t have.

  • http://www.karamelissa.wordpress.com Kara Melissa

    Really good stuff. I’m a new mom and I think it’s really hard sometimes even though I love my son like I never knew I could love someone. But having a baby is so challenging! My son just turned three months and I’ve always been inspired by your newsletter posts for Leta and I’d like to do something similar for my son. What an amazing thing to look back on.

  • http://www.kitchencorners.blogspot.com damaris

    I made it too and am loving every second of it. I take it back. I’m loving every second except for the ones where he is awake in the middle of the night asking to eat breakfast and play with dinosaurs. During the day, however, I’m loving it!

  • http://marriageconfessions.wordpress.com Katie

    Thanks for the thoughts. My husband and I have talked about kids soon, and your post was so encouraging.

  • http://www.unwellness.com bri

    I am in The Good Place right now but it took a year. I was also surprised because I went through so much crap and infertility and loss and did I mention crap in order to have him, and I thought that meant I would be deeply in love from the get go. I was decidedly not. But I am now. I am excited to be with him every day. Just in time to go back to work. Bleh.

    Thank you for this gorgeous post. Seriously.
    -Bri, your best friend in Brooklyn. Ha.

  • http://www.theredheadedlefty.com/ Ashley

    During the first 6 months of my daughter’s life, I told people, “This is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Nothing else comes close. Nothing.” Both my husband and I were postpartumly psychotic. It was nuts. Your posts helped me a lot—I’ve always wanted to tell you that. I saw you speak at BlogHer and was uber-impressed. So, thanks! And best to you.

  • http://www.butcallmebetsy.blogspot.com Aimee

    I like your sentence about wondering what her voice might sound like. Doesn’t it boggle your mind to think what kind of ten year old she’ll be like? Or at 13? Or what it’ll be like when she can express herself on the page as you do?

  • Anonymous

    Yeah, it is a good moment. But as a woman YOUR age with step-teenagers, well… my husband puts it best: When they’re teenagers, you’ll wish they were screaming babies again.

    I second that. Enjoy the next few years, they’re a nice respite, then hang on for the BUMPY ride.

    It’s not easy seeing my cutie pie and knowing that she is so very like her hellion 19 year old sister.

    I’m really not trying to bum you out, it’s just that I’m in the middle of it, and it helps to know that it’ll come back like the back-side of a hurricane. You didn’t have storm shutters the first time – you will now!