Celebrating My First Year as a Mom & A Look Back at How It Changed Me

Now that I’ve crossed the threshold of my first year of motherhood, I can look back on it and see the beauty of it. There was plenty of hardship, as I’ve shared countless times through the course of this past year. But becoming a mom has brought so many changes. Not just to my sleep cycle or the fact that being peed on doesn’t gross me out in the slightest. It has changed me....



Now that I’ve crossed the threshold of my first year of motherhood, I can look back on it and see the beauty of it. There was plenty of hardship, as I’ve shared countless times through the course of this past year. But becoming a mom has brought so many changes. Not just to my sleep cycle or the fact that being peed on doesn’t gross me out in the slightest.

It has changed me.

There have been so many times when I don’t want to do things for Claire. When I don’t want to change another diaper or stop what I’m doing so I can pick her up and comfort her. When I don’t want to hold my frustration in and respond with a smile instead of a scream.

But I know that my actions matter. In a way that they never have before. My love matters. I know that I have the choice with how I respond to her and what those responses can add up to. There is power in how I treat her and how I love her.

And I have seen it shape this crazy little baby who started out crying all the time into a toddler now who is filled with joy. I like to think that I have helped give her that joy. That my selflessness—even when it was forced out through gritted teeth—has made a difference.

Certainly, I make mistakes in my mothering, and I would never claim anything near perfection. But I know I have tried hard and I can say I’m proud of the mom I’ve become, proud of the woman that being Claire’s mom has made me. Her pitiful, soul-shattering cries have taught me patience. Her unwillingness to sleep except curled up in my arms has helped me become flexible and learn to let the tasks and expectations of the day slip to the ground. Her stubbornness has taught me to laugh instead of stew.

Through it all, I’m learning to melt myself into this role of being a mom, a role that is shaving off the prickly parts of my heart and creating in me a version of myself richer and deeper than I’d thought possible. And we’re only a year in. I can’t wait to see what the next couple of decades have in store!

In celebration of how becoming a parent can make you a better person, BlogHer has teamed up with the Dreamworks' movie, Delivery Man. In it, David (Vince Vaughn) finds out that he’s a dad and goes on a hilarious and heartwarming journey to find his long-lost children—and his true self. The movie comes out on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD on March 25, which you can pre-order here. (Watch the movie’s trailer or visit the Delivery Man Facebook page to learn more about the movie.)

Plus, BlogHer is offering up a $100 Visa gift card to one Life Blessons reader who comments, letting me know: “How have your kids changed you for the better?”

Sweepstakes Rules: No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods: Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry. This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected. The Official Rules are available here. This sweepstakes runs from 3/20/14 – 4/17/14. Be sure to visit the Delivery Man page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win! 

142 comments:

  1. Carmen, this is so sweet and such a good reminder for all of us! I love your honesty about how you sometimes don't want to do things for Claire, but you do anyway. Myra is really into playing with babies right now and she LOVES to lay on the floor and have me cover her and her babies with a blanket. She can literally play this game for hours and sometimes I want to scream from the monotony of sitting there repeatedly covering her up. I do it though because, as you said, it matters, and it brings her so much joy.

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  2. having kids has made me slow down in life. They are only little for so long!
    vandenbossche3@hotmail.com

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  3. having kids made me more patient

    elena150980@yahoo.com

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  4. https://twitter.com/ElenaIstomina/status/446740363781238786

    elena150980@yahoo.com

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  5. My son has changed my life for the better because he adds laughter to our house. We giggle over the silliest things (the other night it was his imitation of our puppy, crawling all over the kitchen floor).

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  6. Having children has made me appreciate the small moments. Before I had kids, I seemed to be in a rush all the time and anxious to move onto the next thing. Now I wish I could freeze time.

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

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  7. tweet:

    https://twitter.com/mami2jcn/status/446764533009616897

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  8. My daughter has made me more patient and loving. neyabenz(at)gmail(dot)com

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  9. My kids have taught me that personal relationships are more important than anything else.

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  10. Tweet
    https://twitter.com/clc408/status/447101726605463552

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  11. My niece and nephew have taught me to appreciate the people in my life and recognize the importance of relationships. They also have taught me to make a conscious effort to be happy and pleasure the little things in life. They have taught me not to take life too seriously and don't sweat the small stuff.

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  12. Being a parent has made me be more responsible and patient. Thanks so much.

    rickpeggysmith(at)aol(dot)com

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  13. I tweeted: https://twitter.com/peg42/status/447123095510601728
    Thanks again.
    rickpeggysmith(at)aol(dot)com

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  14. My kids have made me be more kind a d patient .

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  15. Being a mom has showed me a glimpse of what it must be like for God to love us.

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  16. Made me be more patient.
    austma7@aol.com

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  17. I don't have a kid, but I have a dog who is my "kid". :-) She's taught me to be happier, in general. I love how dogs are always happy!

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  18. My kids have taught me better critical thinking as well as making me better at compromising :)   I need both in order to watch out for my kids best interests, as well as balancing freedom with good choices :) 
    anastasia2013@gmail.com

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  19. Tweeted :) - https://twitter.com/Enter_Now/status/447301748009353216
    anastasia2013@gmail.com

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  20. That your heart can fill with more love than you could ever imagine.
    onefrugalgirl AT gmail DOT com

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  21. https://twitter.com/OneFrugalGirl/status/447370255737032704
    onefrugalgirl AT gmail DOT com

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  22. My daughter has taught me how to love others and to take things simple.

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  23. They have shown me how beautiful it is to be selfless.

    chambanachik(at)gmail(dot)com

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  24. Having children has made me more patient, responsible and loving. It has also made me less selfish.
    s2s2 at Comcast dot net

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  25. https://twitter.com/susan1215/status/447437716326592512
    s2s2 at Comcast dot net

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  26. my kids have changed me for the better because i try to be a good example and role model for them, so i am more aware of doing the right things at the right times.
    stigay at comcast.net

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  27. When I had kids, I learned what unconditional love is. I learned that even 30 years later, you still worry. And I learned the best thing about having kids is GRANDkids!

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  28. My kids have taught me that it is okay not to be perfect.

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  29. They have given me patience, understanding, and the ability to unconditional love.
    elysesw@aol.com

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  30. Its made me more responsible and concerned about the future of the country.
    lazybones344 at gmail dot com

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  31. more patience and look at things through children's eyes - simple joys

    tvollowitz at aol dot com

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  32. They have taught me to have lots of patience and given me new perspective on life.

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  33. https://twitter.com/ardy22/status/447586937939836928

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  34. My children taught me selflessness and unconditional love. :)

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  35. Having children has taught me patience, which was a big problem for me. You cannot be impatient with children at all, and with my new-found patience, it has made other areas of my life better, especially relationships with others. I find the care of children rewarding and watching them grow and change is wonderful.

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  36. https://twitter.com/LuLu_Brown24/status/447708993616498689

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  37. I can see the happiness, wonder and beauty in the world through my daughter's eyes. It is amazing the little things you appreciate with a child in your life.

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  38. Yes, they've given me a newfound appreciation for life. .
    I was pretty depressed until I met my husband and then had my children. I am so happy with them.
    tamarsweeps-at-gmail-dot-com

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  39. I don't have my own kids but the kids at my job remind me that people are resilient in the face of life.

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  40. My children have taught me about how God loves me. I delight in my children as God delights in me. I grieve for the pain my children goes just as I imagine God mourns with me. I hope my children are able to give up the little things so they can have the big surprise I am planning for them.

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  41. We tried for a year to have a baby, and then finally found out we were having twins. They have changed our lives for the better. My husband and I have gotten closer to God because of the things we went through trying to get pregnant and my son being in the Nicu (5 weeks early).
    We do not drink anymore, we are more patient, we both appreciate the little things in life more, and we just dedicate our lives and time to our kids. They are such a blessing and truly are the GREATEST gift!!
    Thank you!!
    faithrains2387 (At) Yahoo.com

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  42. Tweet:
    https://twitter.com/heavensangel238/status/448272286022656000
    Faithrains2387 (AT) Yahoo.com
    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  43. I have more patience now.

    rhoneygtn at yahoo dot com

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  44. My girls have made me stronger. They've taught me that I am strong enough
    to stand up for myself and them. I have to be willing to go that extra mile for
    them because no one else will. I can't stand back and not say anything like I use to because I don't want anyone hurting my child. Thank you!

    crystalfaulkner2000 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  45. They taught me to slow down in life, to smell roses and enjoy sunshine.
    tcarolinep at gmail dot com

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  46. -https://twitter.com/tcarolinep/status/448646200497950720

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  47. Having my daughter made me a more patient person. I was always pretty patient, but with her I learned to make sure I slowed down and enjoy every moment and wait for things, most everything is worth the wait

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  48. I tweeted https://twitter.com/2BeFitBy50/status/449203391680741376

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  49. I've learned not to take things so seriously and to be more patient.
    thank you

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  50. Tweet https://twitter.com/JalapenoMama/status/449347137512304642

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  51. it has taught me that God doesn't just love me when i'm making good choices. i have such a deeper understanding of His unfailing love!

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  52. My children are all grown but I learned that love is never ending and unconditional.

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  53. Beside keeping me active, I became a responsible person.

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  54. That life truly is a blessing from God!

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  55. She taught me patience and unconditional love.

    hewella1 at gmail dot com

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  56. my kids have taught me to be patient. loving. selfless. in ways i didn't know

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  57. https://twitter.com/raggammuffin/status/450236138188701696

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  58. i'm able to relate to others better

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  59. Having children changed me in so many ways, I definitely became less selfish but more importantly I realized I had to take better care of myself because I was responsible for more than just my happiness in life.
    mummytotwoboys@yahoo.com

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  60. Tweeted
    https://twitter.com/mummytotwoboys1/status/451077694986280960
    mummytotwoboys@yahoo.com

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  61. they made me a better person ,stronger and more patience

    ReplyDelete
  62. https://twitter.com/HappyTina0115/status/451173574892474369

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  63. I'm so much less judgmental, parenting is humbling! I do NOT have all the answers!

    ReplyDelete
  64. https://twitter.com/channynn/status/451348839023124480

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  65. my daughter taught me to value others


    joe gersch jtwark@mail.com

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  66. My kids have made me more patient and understanding!

    coriwestphal at msn dot com

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  67. Tweet: https://twitter.com/coriwestphal/status/452987895658201088

    coriwestphal at msn dot com

    ReplyDelete
  68. My kids changed me because suddenly I wanted to be the best Mom I could for them, I love them that much. Change isn't easy but the joy is that they love you back no matter what.

    ReplyDelete
  69. I only have a furbaby, I was unfortunate and couldn’t carry. But, she is our joy and she brings so much love and happiness to our life.

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  70. https://twitter.com/myfolly/status/453070492531183617

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  71. I've learned a lot about patience and the power of laughter.

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  72. My kids have taught me selflessness and a deeper love than I've ever known!
    nuthouse(at)centurytel(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  73. tweeted: https://twitter.com/KerryBishop/status/453682226333380609
    nuthouse(at)centurytel(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  74. My kids have made my life so much funner.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Addictedtorodeo at gmail dot com
    My kids made me more creative. They brought back my playful side

    ReplyDelete
  76. i learned that its okay if everything is not perfect!

    debbiebellows (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  77. tweeted:

    https://twitter.com/bellows22/status/454098227583668224

    debbiebellows (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  78. They've made me a more giving person.

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  79. to put others needs first
    MCantu1019 at aol dot com

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  80. My daughter has helped me live in the now and see the world through a child's eyes....ahhh the wonder!

    cgies25 at hotmail

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  81. They have showed me how to pause and enjoy the little things in life! mistyharms2@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  82. My tweet https://twitter.com/mistymarie34/status/454791537634050048 mistyharms2@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  83. I have changed for the better by putting someone else first and caring more.

    motioncitycutie(at)aol(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  84. I have changed for the better by putting others before myself and having more patient. Thanks for the giveaway aunteegem@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  85. Because I had my daughter at such a young age, I had to grow up quite quickly and become a responsible adult and parent.

    ReplyDelete
  86. I have 2 sons, 4 and 6. They have taught me to be more patient.
    seyma_bennett@hotmail.com

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  87. they have helped me be less selfish and more patient pryfamily5@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  88. i tweeted https://twitter.com/DaPryz/status/455709180276404224 pryfamily5@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  89. I have no kids of my own but am always amaazed at the antics of my nephews Alex and Nick.
    LINDA HEFFERNAN

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  90. Made me realize it's okay not to control everything.

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  91. My son has made me a much more patient person, and he makes me take the time to stop and appreciate the little things.

    Thanks for the chance to win!

    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  92. tweet--https://twitter.com/WildOrchid985/status/456013858415861760

    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  93. Now that I have kids "I stop and smell the roses" I enjoy every minute of our life together and treasure every moment.
    neiddyruiz@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  94. my tweet - https://twitter.com/neiddy_ruiz/status/456038868492365825
    neiddyruiz@gmail.com

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  95. They make you slow down and see the world from a different view. It seems that until you have kids you don't appreciate the little things.....things you used to just walk by and never gave a thought to.

    ReplyDelete
  96. Once I had kids I became less self-centered, got to feel what it was like to be a kid again, made me see the world in a much different way, made me value my own life more, it made my relationship with my husband, parents and sisters even stronger and overall I feel like I feel emotions even stronger.

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  97. My kids have made me to constantly strive to be the best mom I can…I quit smoking 5 years ago for them…I’m always trying to set a positive example for them. I was an adventure seeker before them…now I’m much more cautious about EVERYTHING!

    pittsy82@hotmail.com

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  98. tweeted https://twitter.com/pittsy82/status/456159933084348418

    pittsy82@hotmail.com

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  99. I tend to be a spur of the moment person but having kids changed that for good. You have to plan things out, you have to bring this, that and the other thing. When a kid has to pee, they mean Now not ten minutes from now.

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  100. https://twitter.com/ddx155/status/456183153322127361

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  101. I learned unconditional love! My kids have taught me to enjoy every moment!

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  102. My kids made me realize what and who are important to have in my life and to appreciate every moment.
    njharmonyg at aol dot com

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  103. My youngest has Autism, ive learned to make my household run smoothly..you gotta learn not to sweat the little things in life..what happens...happens move on and make the best of every situation

    cpsnsamples @ aol.com

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  104. I am not a mother. I will be one day!

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  105. My kids have changed me for the better by making me see life through their young eyes, kids are so positive and see the best in life and other people.

    ReplyDelete
  106. My kids have taught me to slow down and take the stop and smell the roses philosophy so to speak.

    ReplyDelete
  107. I am more patient

    dlatany at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  108. https://twitter.com/sweetums82/status/456451380983517184

    dlatany at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  109. no kids yet but my nephew make me smile and so happy when i spend time with him

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  110. https://twitter.com/purplelover04/status/456455697324965889

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  111. I quit smoking for my little 4 year old daughter because she asked me. After 26 years of the habit I kicked it for her..I want to see her grow up!

    ReplyDelete
  112. I feel like having kids made me live in the moment, and taught me what was really important. Being a mom is the best thing in my life. I love my kids more than anything.
    4mariemh atgmaildot com

    ReplyDelete
  113. I consider myself an amazing multi-tasker thanks to my daughter

    ReplyDelete
  114. They have changed me for the better by teaching me patience

    ReplyDelete
  115. My kids have changed me completely. The minute I had my first son I knew that the world wasn't all about me anymore. For the first time I experienced true selflessness. I have 3 grown sons and 2 grandsons now and they are the most important things in the world to me.

    ReplyDelete
  116. tweet
    https://twitter.com/eswright18/status/456557476171616256

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  117. THAT THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE WITH THEM IN IT

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  118. THAT THEY ARE MY EVERYTHING AND THAT I AM SOOO BLESSED

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  119. My kids have taught me to appreciate the little things and patience.

    fmd518 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  120. They have made me more patient and have given me so much joy

    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  121. https://twitter.com/ChelleB36/status/456644357802569729

    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  122. My kids taught me patience and letting go to have fun.
    traymona[at]aol.com

    ReplyDelete

  123. They have taught me to be more patient.
    pokergrl8 at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  124. https://twitter.com/aes529/status/456783473836310528
    pokergrl8 at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  125. my kids have changed my life for the better by showing me how to enjoy the little things in life. life is too short to be mad, just smile and have a good time.

    ReplyDelete
  126. My two little boys are the best things I have ever done. They make me whole.

    ReplyDelete
  127. My kids have made my alot more responsible and caring.

    rounder9834 @yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  128. https://twitter.com/thomasmurphy40/status/456839837379993600

    rounder9834 @yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  129. I am more aware of how my actions affect the world.
    discriminating_diva at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  130. I've learned to love unconditionally.

    Charity S

    ReplyDelete
  131. My kids taught me love, patience and responsibility

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  132. I've never had kids. I think they teach you to live in the moment.

    Thanks for the contest.

    slehan at juno dot com

    ReplyDelete
  133. https://twitter.com/slehan/status/456927069348167680

    slehan at juno dot com

    ReplyDelete
  134. They have taught me to be careful because they watch everything you do and say. Thank you


    candieluster(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  135. I understand love so much more and the future is even more important I have a million times more patience. I also use to wish for time to fly by (growup) and now I wish it would slow down. 

    ReplyDelete
  136. Made me more responsible.

    hlee99 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  137. I tweeted at
    https://twitter.com/leedhowell/status/457396261076107264

    hlee99 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  138. Kids make me more responsible.

    ajoy1332 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  139. https://twitter.com/ajoy1332/status/457515919070085121

    ajoy1332 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  140. Children make me more responsive to others' needs.

    eugeniewu [at] gmail-dot-com

    ReplyDelete

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