Parenthood and Your Parents

The following is written in a real mom’s own words. This is an outlet for parents who would like to share their stories, in the hope that others will connect and find support. If you have a story you’d like to share, please message us on Facebook or email us at

It takes a good, long while for your parents to stop being “your paaarents” [insert eye roll here], and start being…you know…actual people.

At some point, Mom and Dad stop becoming our caretakers and champions of the universe. They don’t actually stop – we just stop giving them credit for it. At that point, they become curfew setters, significant other intimidators, and unsolicited advice givers. They love you through your awkward phase, which is no easy task. They love you well into your “I’m the raddest” phase, which is even more difficult than those bumbling pre-teen years.

You grow up, grow wings, and get to realizing your parents are pretty okay. They prepare you for college. They even buy you that mini microwave for dorm room popcorn that you so clearly need. They let you move your crap in, and out, and in again for spring break, summer, and any old time, really.

Post-college, parents become friends. Maybe even your closest ones. You can relate. Now you understand what it’s like to put in a full work week, pay the rent, and do more stuff than ever that you don’t really wanna do. If you don’t know what it’s like to pay rent, then you’re probably still living at home, and that’s all the more reason to appreciate dear old Mom and Dad.

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This progression is natural. But it isn’t until you carry your first born, and hold them in your shaky arms, that you see your parents for what they really are.

They’re everything. They’re why you’re here.

They stayed up countless nights while you figured out the whole sleeping thing.

They took your fear of that dinosaur poster seriously; they covered the T Rex’s red eyes with duct tape so you could sleep at night, free from his watch.

They warned you that sucking your thumb at six years old wasn’t a good look, and that you’d end up needing braces.

When you did need braces, they foot the bill and drove you to your appointments. Gosh, you hated those things. But they got you milkshakes after each one.

They saved to take you on mini getaways that never felt mini to you.

They helped you with your math homework even though it was pretty foreign to them, too.

You remember this stuff, and you grow more thankful for it than ever. But more than anything, you remember this overarching joy and laughter. You don’t recall complaints about how exhausted they were, or how expensive your ridiculously ornate dance recital costumes were. You don’t remember hearing that they weren’t in the holiday spirit this year, or they had a terrible day at the office and wanted to be left alone. You never heard them say that you couldn’t get back-to-school clothes because they were buying themselves new outfits instead.

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And you have to stop and think how selfless parents really are. Yours, and mine. How selfless they need to be, to get the job done. How well they worked together, and how overwhelmed with indebtedness you suddenly feel.

My father says the best way to repay your parents is to offer your own children the best that you can. I think he’s right, and I sure am trying.

Thank you, Moms and Dads of Moms and Dads. It might not ever be enough, but we can see clearly now, and we thank you.

Mom of 1, with 1 more on the way

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