Wow! It's hard to believe that I taught my very first Stroller Strides class 14 years ago in Encinitas, CA. I had 4 moms show up for the first class. Little did I know that it would become the first of over 2,000 locations nationwide. It's been quite a ride.
I started the classes because I needed a village. I needed support as a new mom. I was always looking for the answers that other moms had. And now, it is my privilege to share a few of the answers that I have found in my past 14 years of motherhood.
1) It will all pass. The hard days and temper tantrums will pass. And so will the tiny hands and sweet firsts of a new baby. Appreciate the good stuff and let go of the not so good stuff. Days are long but years go by fast!
2) Start with the end in mind. Think about who you want your child to grow up to be. Chances are you want him to be polite, self sufficient, healthy, independent. Your parenting matters. Insist on good manners. Let them do what they can.
3) Don't let them wear you down! No means no. Don't give in to whining or you will raise a child that will whine to get what they want. Goodness, I wish I learned this sooner!
4) Don't judge other moms! I really need to do a podcast on this. Be very careful not to judge other moms who do things differently than you do. You are not in their shoes. You do not have the same circumstances or kids for that matter. I can't tell you how many things I have done as a mom that I said I would never do.
5) Love them enough to love yourself. I can't say it enough times or in enough ways. You must take care of yourself. Sleep, Eat well. Exercise. You cannot be the mom you want to be if you are depleted. They tell you to put the oxygen mask on you first for a reason!
Thanks to all of you who have been part of our village for the past 14 years! We thank each and every one of you for giving each other the strength for motherhood!