Moms remember. We remember the big things and the little things. We remember more than we want to most of the time, too.
We remember the way our hearts ached as we took apart the crib.
We remember the fear as we watched them drive off for the first time.
We remember the joy when we held each of our children for the first time.
We remember the first heartbreak, the first graduation, and the first touchdown.
We remember these things because we have to.
We know the kids will all grow up and forge paths of their own that one day won’t include us. So we must remember.
The team here at Knoxville Moms is made up of a variety of women with children of all ages and stages. Collectively, we’ve done a heck of a lot of mothering.
Here are a few of our favorite motherhood milestones we’ve experienced over the years:
- “When M was about 8, I could take him to a restaurant for dinner and talk to him like a human instead of asking him to not eat gum off the bottom of the table and the like.”
- “When they start going to friends’ houses and you don’t have to be the play date coordinator. It’s so scary and refreshing!”
- “When they hit high school and you realize you’re only a few years from having an adult. It’s both heartbreaking and exciting.”
- “Their first real boyfriend or girlfriend. It is amazing to see how they model what they’ve seen in their parents’ relationship.”
- “The SLEEP! There are weekends when we stay in bed until 11am just drinking our coffee because our teens are still sleeping anyway!”
- “When they drive. It’s scary thinking of everyone else on the road, but having them pick up a sibling or do a grocery run is AMAZING.”
- “When they get body odor and greasy hair and stop showering very often (that’s early teen years) and you have to kindly remind your kid not to be the stinky kid in class.”
- “When they can shower by themselves!!”
- “When my daughter started packing her own lunch for school.”
- “When they are old enough for birthday parties to be drop off style and I no longer have to stay and hang out.”
- “Surviving my teenager’s first boyfriend is proving noteworthy.”
- “I had one ‘graduate’ therapy.”
- “Leaving my kids home alone!!! I’ve been leaving them for an hour or two while I run a quick errand for about 2 years, and that has been life-altering. So we’ve started going on dates now! A few weeks ago my husband and I took about 6-7 hours and drove up to Cades Cove for a date day. I can’t explain it.”
- “Having no strollers, potty seats, high chairs, cribs or pack-n-plays. I feel like that’s life-changing!”
- “When my oldest became skilled enough to read books to my youngest in the backseat of the car.”
- “Using the toilet! Reading! Riding a bike without training wheels! Taking showers!”
- “Graduating out of Mommy and Me classes and joining the preschool classes for activities! It’s AMAZING being able to take a break in the lobby while my daughter does gymnastics instead of running after her in Mommy and Me classes.”
- “Showers on their own, no more double strollers, play dates where I don’t have to follow them around, wiping themselves, buckling themselves in the car, and sitting all the way through church.”
- “This might be unpopular but when the bigs got phones. It’s so fun to talk to them like actual people, but they’re still weirdo kids who send me emojis and memes.”
- “Sounds like a corny cliché but I have truly had to learn to be thankful for every little milestone. Even when it comes late. Learning how to do that was a milestone in itself.”
- “I clearly remember the day my oldest could ride the bus home from school and let himself into the house (is that a latchkey kid?). I was a single mom working full-time and the relief that I didn’t have to leave work early to pick him up from school was such a burden lifted.”
- “I distinctly remember the last night my son crawled into bed with me. Somehow I sensed that it was not going to happen again and I was at peace with it.”
No matter what stage of motherhood you’re in, there will always be milestones — for both you and your kids.