Once Upon A Decade Ago 

Once upon a decade ago, my life was different.

Once upon a decade ago, I hadn't earned the title of "Mom" yet.

Once upon a decade ago, I was working on an ESL endorsement.

Once upon a decade ago, I was preparing to be a Mom.

It was January 2010, once upon a decade ago, and I was about to have my world changed forever. I made it to my twelve-week ultrasound with my daughter. It was my twenty-eighth birthday. Several months later I earned the title of "Mom."

Now, a decade later, I am navigating PTA meetings, gymnastics, and the sassiness of a 9 and a half-year-old and the squirminess of a seven-year-old. I didn't know what having the title of "Mom" would come to mean.

It means that I hear the word "mom" 86,400 times per day (or approximately once every second) for one or the other child to tattle on their sibling.

It means that I watch kid-appropriate television shows while they're awake with the unrealistic hope that I will be able to watch a single episode of a more adult-themed show before I, too, fall asleep.

It means that we fill our lives with trampolines and parks instead of movies and game nights.

It also means that when I am having a rotten, no good, very bad day, I have two extra sets of arms that wrap around me and say, "Mommy, I love you."

A decade has passed since I first saw my peanut on the twelve-week ultrasound. I celebrated my thirty-eighth birthday yesterday. And although my daughter is still a peanut and her brother isn't a whole lot bigger, my heart grew a lot over the last decade.

Entering this decade, I wonder what will be my takeaways when I look back in 2030—when instead of approaching 40, I'll be approaching 50. Any guesses?

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I believe that there's a lot more to learn from failing than from succeeding. After all, if everything goes smoothly every time you're cooking, you're definitely not prepared for when things do not go