I wish I could write this whimsical look back on how the trials and tribulations of early parenthood got me to a place of absolute wisdom. I would love to tell you all the ways I figured out how to be the mom my kids need in a way that was absolute. However, the truth is I'm still learning. My three unique kids are still growing and changing on a daily basis. The moment I think I've got what one of them needs figured out, they go and flip the script. While changing it up on the dance floor frequently is great for a party, changing up the what-my-child-needs playlist as often as my children do makes me dizzy. In other words, it's hard to keep up.
While I don't have all the answers to what my kids need, I have figured out some ways to keep pace with the learn-as-you-go nature of parenting. In fact, I'd like to think I've even figured out some ways that make it more likely I'll be the mom my kids need in any given moment. But, again, this parenting thing is truly a moment-to-moment gig, I am the "best mama ever" five minutes before I hear my kid yell, "I hate you!" What I've learned in my nearly eight years as a parent is that both statements are equally true and false, and neither of them means I'm not the parent my kids need.
If you're anything like me, though, sometimes it helps to get really concrete about your parenting hacks so you know you're not just fooling yourself. Here are some of the many ways I continue to figure out how to be the mom my kids need.