Some of my favorite posts to read are "Why being a mom is enough", "You're doing a good job, mama.", and "What being a mom means to me.", I just love knowing I am not the only one that sometimes goes a little insane. That sometimes I don't want to watch Doc McStuffins, again, and it's ok to turn it to a DVR'd episode of General Hospital, even if I have to turn on subtitles because I can't hear over my fit-throwing-doc-mcstuffins-loving two year old.

I've said it a million times and I'm sure I'll say it a million more, I wish I could get paid to be a wife and mother. That's all I've ever wanted to do, just raise babies and stay home in some fancy chef's kitchen and do photoshoots with pretty food to post on my blog. Wait, Reality check. I'm 22 years old and haven't put in my time yet, that doesn't just happen, you can't just POOF, and have a fancy house, cars, one income that will pay for it all, so I can be a dreamy Stay-At-Home-Mom. {Unfortunately}

I found a quote a while back, it said, "Don't compare your chapter 1 to someone else's chapter 20". It spoke volumes. I get so caught up in all the people I follow on Instagram in their late 20's/30's that are awesome moms that get to stay home and still afford a J.Crew swimsuit without having to budget it, or go out on a spontaneous date night without the money coming from envelope labeled "date night" that's been holding $5 a week for 6 weeks just to save enough money for a night out to Olive Garden. I won't lie, it's discouraging sometimes. I want to be able to live in a house, with a backyard for McKinlee to play in.

I simply have to remind myself we started our family after knowing each other 15 months, we've only known each other three years and we've only been parents for two. We are two 22 year olds that started our life in a one bedroom apartment with hand-me-down furniture and make-shift baby room in our "master suite". From there, we've moved into a two-bedroom apartment, two cars that we had decent enough credit to put in our names, we talk marriage often and what our life will look like in five years. I am a lover of future talk. I always find the OCD/planner part of me making a list of things I want in the next five years, marriage, house, baby #2, I have been trying to stop and just live in the moment. The last three years have been so spontaneous that we're finally trying to settle in for the long haul.

Being a mom is loving a night at home watching Frozen, while rewinding it because she just wants to hear "let it go" over and over, then going to bed at 10:30 after an episode of 20/20. Seriously though, those are tonight's plans. Being a mom is all of the little things that I know without a shadow of doubt if something were to ever happen to her I would miss, every day. Things like, in the morning when I hear her just lying in her crib talking to herself and then I walk in there and she just has this huge smile on her face and says, "mama!" like she missed me so much all night, and sometimes when we're just sitting around the house and she'll run up and give me a kiss cause she really does love me, I am the definition of love to her. When she learns a new word and she has to use it every way possible, "Sissy can you say, Happy Birthday?" "Papa Birday, Mimi Birday, Daddy Birday, Mama Birday, Sissy Birday".

Being a mom is finding the balance between holding onto her littleness without holding her back from blooming into the little lady I know she was born to be. She is feisty and she's energetic and I'm almost positive she's the spitting image of me when I was her age, like when my mom tried to put me in ballet but I had too much energy so she pulled me out and put me in soccer. I feel like that will be my future in 12 short months. She'll be doing somersaults across the floor while they're supposed to be elegantly positioned on their toes, so we'll pull her out and put her in something more her speed.

Now, I won't be attending Grad School in the Fall or starting my dream job with my fancy new degree, but I am slowly but surely getting there, and I will have a degree by the time I need it. I have gained so much more in life experiences, I've learned do's-dont's when it comes to taxes, that a lot of paperwork goes into purchasing a car. I've learned that breastfeeding is the best thing for your baby and that compromise is essential for a relationship to work. I've learned that raising a baby is the hardest, most rewarding experience you will ever come by, but worth every single second.