8 Things A Mom Says She's Grateful For Vs. What She's *Actually* Grateful For

Ad failed to load

Now that November is officially here, it's that time of year when Americans start feeling extra grateful. The latest social media's Gratitude Challenges, have been taking over my feeds, which is great, considering researchers recommend people practice daily gratitude. Personally, I have so much to be grateful for, but there are definitely things I'm really grateful for that I don't share too often. That should change, though, and I'm working to be more cognizant of the positives in my life. According to Robert Emmons, a UC Davis psychologist and author, people "who regularly practice gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon the things they're thankful for experience more positive emotions, feel more alive, sleep better, express more compassion and kindness, and even have stronger immune systems."

Obviously, I'm eternally grateful for my children and my husband. I am thankful for my parents, who adore my kids and always help and drop off dinner and take my kids to and from school. I'm thankful for my in-laws, who love playing with my children and showering them with love and attention and gifts. I'm thankful for our life, our home, and our fridge full of food. I'm thankful for my job and that I get to do what I love every single day of my life. I have a lot to be grateful for.

And still, there are so many other, seemingly benign things I'm really grateful for. Like bulky sweaters on a chilly fall evening. Or, the comfy couch. Or, huge cups of coffee, chocolate, and pizza. I'm grateful for tequila, wine, and beer. I'm grateful for cheese fries and burgers and tacos. But, moms aren't supposed to be grateful for such insignificant things, you know? They are supposed to be thankful for the big stuff; the important stuff; the "found in a Hallmark card" kind of stuff. And, obviously moms are thankful for all of those things, but they are also grateful for the little things that help them sustain their sanity, too.

Ad failed to load

"I Am Grateful For The Food On Our Table"


Translation: "I'm grateful that my kids are actually going to eat a real meal for the first time in days."

I don't know about you, but most weeks you'll find me running around like a crazy person, trying to get everything done. So, more often than not, my family has been surviving on pizza and crackers. I'm also grateful my kids are going to clean the table after the dinner and for the husband who is going to do the dishes. Finally, I'm grateful for leftovers, which mean I won't have to cook for yet another week now. Then, it'll be back to makeshift meals until the next holiday.

"I'm Grateful For My Parents' Visit"

Translation: "I'm grateful that my mom is going to cook much of the dinner and dessert and that my dad will play with the kids for hours.

I'm also grateful for the presents my parents give to the kids because that means the kids will be occupied for at least an hour. Unless it's a toy that makes a ton of noise, those toys should die in a fire.

"I Am Grateful For Time With My Family"


Translation: "I'm grateful for the television that keeps the kids interested for hours."

Personally, I am especially thankful for Bo on the Go and Story Bots because, you guys, my son loves them and they are awesome. But also, I'm grateful for early bedtimes, quick showers, minimal toddler tantrums, and comfy pajamas. I'm grateful for the time when everyone is in bed so I can eat popcorn without a chunky little hand stealing some, and without an 8-year-old whining about how bored she is.

Ad failed to load

"I'm Grateful For A Lowkey Thanksgiving"

Translation: "I'm grateful for disposable plates and cups and tableware, for not having to change out of my leggings and a hoodie, for not having to feed 50 people I need to clean up after, and for takeout."

I'm grateful for zero hours spent in the kitchen, for minimal cleaning, and for everyone keeping their comments to themselves about how little effort I put into the holidays. In fact, I'm grateful for a meal without any conversation at all.

"I'm Grateful For The Holidays"


Translation: "I'm grateful for days off from work, sleeping in, and lazy mornings and afternoons."

Without fail, I'm grateful for the time of the year when I'm able to turn off my alarm and for the fact that my husband gets up with the kids. I'm grateful for Netflix because I don't have to find a cartoon for the kids and they can find one on their own without having to wake me up. I'm grateful for technology that keeps everyone out of my life for about 20 minutes.

"I'm Grateful For My Friends"

Translation: "I'm grateful for their kids who keep my kids occupied."

My friends are the best because of the wine they bring with them and the adult conversation they provide. I'm thankful that my adult friends are willing to talk about anything but changing diapers and which daycare has the best teachers and which way of parenting is better than the other.

Ad failed to load

"I'm Grateful For My Partner"


Translation: "I'm grateful for the fact that my partner is a totally competent and involved parent."

I'm grateful for my nights out with my friends while my husband stays home with the kids. I'm grateful I don't have to worry whether or not my children will be fed or bathed. I'm grateful for hours I can spend food shopping, by myself, without any interruption from a toddler who just has to sit in the cart and then has to walk and then has to sit back in the cart.

"I'm Grateful For My Children"

Translation: "I'm grateful for my children."

There's no hidden meaning for this one, my friends. Every single day, whether it's November and we're celebrating Thanksgiving or not, I'm grateful for their smiles, their random hugs and little moments of love, their faces, their quirkiness, their wittiness, their warmth, their everything. I'm grateful for the fact that they made me a mom, that they made me a better version of myself, and that they exist. Without a doubt, I know my children make the world a better place.

Watch Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Check out the entire Romper's Doula Diaries series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

Being A Dog Parent Prepared Me For Having A Baby, Really

I’ve always wanted kids; I was never as sure about raising a puppy. Then I spent six months living with someone who brought home an eight-week-old golden retriever puppy, and I see no way to make it out of that experience claiming not to love dogs. I…
By Heather Caplan

20 Of The Most Popular Unisex Names Of All Time, That You'll Be Hearing More Of For Sure

You might think of unisex names as a fairly recent trend, but the truth is these versatile monikers have been commonly used throughout history (well, some more commonly than others). That's why the team over at Names.org recently compiled a list of t…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

How To Have A Date Night With No Babysitter, Because It's Easier Than You Think

After having children, many couples feel that their love lives immediately go out the window, but it's so important to make your romantic life a priority so both you and your partner can be the best versions of yourselves you can be. As we all know, …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

9 Ways Baby No. 3 Made My Family Feel Complete

My husband and I decided to have another baby right after we got married and, well, we had no idea what we were getting into. I got pregnant right away, endured a high-risk pregnancy, and, before I knew it, my third baby had arrived. Together, we emb…
By Steph Montgomery

8 Stereotypes About New Dads That Are *Totally* True

Much like new mothers, new fathers have a lot on their plate. Parenting can be scary and complex, especially at first and regardless of your gender. People want to do right by their kids, after all. And since all new parents are a hot mess, dads are …
By Priscilla Blossom

8 Differences Between Being Pregnant In Your 20s Vs 30s, According To Science

Whether you're planning a pregnancy, or just thinking about your future family, it's typical to think about things like child-spacing, how many kids you want, and when to start trying to conceive. When making your pro/con list, you might also conside…
By Steph Montgomery

16 Moms Share Remedies For Their Most Intense Chocolate Cravings During Pregnancy

For better or worse, pregnancy is usually synonymous with odd cravings. Sure, there are the stereotypical combos like pickles and ice cream that plague gestating women the world over, but there are other mind-boggling combinations, too, including but…
By Candace Ganger

Putting Sunscreen On Your Kid Doesn't Have To Be A Fight — Here's How To Do It

I am almost translucent, so me and sunscreen are basically besties at this point. Even though my children are beautifully deep brown thanks to my husband's genetics, I still slather them like biscuits being buttered because I refuse to take risks wit…
By Cat Bowen

7 Things A Mom Really Means When She Says She Doesn't Want Anything On Mother's Day

Every year my family asks me what I want for Mother's Day, and every single year I tell them the same thing: Nothing. So, by now, they know that when I say "nothing" I absolutely do not mean "nothing." In fact, there are more than a few things a mom …
By Candace Ganger

19 Moms Share The Way They Cured Their Pregnancy Comfort Food Cravings

I was obnoxiously sick during the first trimester with, "lucky" for me, both of my pregnancies. For the first three months I lived on saltines, lemonade, and fresh bread. Once I was able to eat, however, all I wanted was savory and sweet comfort food…
By Dina Leygerman

8 Fascinating Facts About Babies Born In May, The Luckiest Month Of All

The height of all things fresh and springy, May is an excellent month to have a baby. It's a time of growth, graduations, and outdoor celebrations. And these fascinating facts about May babies will give you more reasons than ever to appreciate childr…
By Lindsay E. Mack

I Used To Judge Formula-Feeding Moms — Until I Became One

The other patrons in the hip Brooklyn restaurant probably couldn’t care less what I was feeding my baby, but I’ll always remember the shame I felt as I quickly mixed up his bottle of formula in front of them. I admitted to my childless friend that I …
By Katherine Martinelli

7 White Lies It’s Necessary To Tell To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Telling lots of lies typically isn't associated with a healthy, strong, lasting relationship, and that's still certainly true, but not all lies are exactly the same. Though you've probably heard from someone at least once or twice that the lie they t…
By Lauren Schumacker

The Skinny Jeans That Saved Me Postpartum

Accepting my post-pregnancy body is hands-down one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I still work on every single day. During my first pregnancy, I was 20 years old, so I managed to bounce back quickly. In fact, I dropp…
By Allison Cooper

7 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say They Feel Safe

In those first weeks of new motherhood, it can feel like you need an interpreter for your newborn. With their limited means of communication, figuring out what message your baby is trying to get across to you can be a challenge. With time, however, y…
By Kimmie Fink

Here's Why Dogs Are Obsessed With Babies' Poop, According To Science

Most family dogs seem to understand babies, and they're more than happy to make friends with the newest member of the pack. It's adorable... for the most part and until you go to change your little one's diaper. Suddenly, you're wondering why dogs ar…
By Lindsay E. Mack

6 Signs You're Meant To Have A Big Age Gap Between Kids

There's a five year age difference between my two children, to the day. Their age gap wasn't planned but, for a variety of reasons, works well for our family. And since I was so focused on having a second baby, I totally overlooked the signs that wou…
By Candace Ganger

13 Unique (& Totally Not Mainstream) Mother's Day Gifts For The Hipster Mom

Hipsters thrive on being outside the norm and not really digging anything considered "mainstream." Whether it's in their fashion, what music they listen to, the books they read, or how they enjoy beverages, there's just something that makes them dist…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Here's How To Introduce Your Pet To Your Baby & Make Everything As Calm As Possible

Our home, which we lovingly refer to as “the funny farm,” is filled with four-legged family members. We have two crazy beagles and two cat jerks, and boy are they loved and spoiled. (As they should be.) But we are now finally having a baby of our own…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Here's The Right Birth Method For You, According To Your Zodiac Sign

If you're pregnant, you've probably given childbirth some serious thought. Some moms-to-be prepare a meticulous birth plan, while others are comfortable just going with the flow. And me? Well, I made a plan... but that plan was useless when faced wit…
By Steph Montgomery

My Dog Knew I Was Pregnant Before My Family Did

Growing up, I was 100 percent sure I'd be a mom one day. To a dog, that is. My baby plans came later. And once my husband and I were sure we wanted both a dog and a baby, we'd add to our joint dog-and-baby name list over Sunday brunch or on date nigh…
By Melissa Mills