Describe how it felt the first time you held Caidenin your arms: The first time I held Caiden in my arms, I experienced a love stronger than any words can explain. A love only mother's can feel, and a bond just as strong. This was my boy. I was instantly protective of him and absolutely obsessed with staring at and talking to him. There he was, after what felt like centuries of waiting, in my arms. I was thankful he was perfectly healthy and just infatuated with every inch of him.
How has being a mom changed you as a person? Being a mom has changed me in pretty much every way possible. I am a very different person now, and I couldn't be more thankful to Caiden for that. Caiden has taught me patience, which is something I used to have none of. He has taught me to relax. He has taught me to keep moving and not be lazy. I have become more mature, and know that everything I do has to keep Caiden in mind. I have become more thoughtful of others and their potential hardships because having Caiden has even taught me to be more compassionate. He made me more motivated to choose a career and succeed in it both to be a role model for him someday and to also be able to provide him with anything he needed or wanted. I tell him every day that he is my angel, but he has no idea how much I really mean that.
What’s the best part about being a mom? The best part about being a mom is the bond that I get to have with my baby boy. We are very in sync with each other. The unconditional love goes both ways and you can feel it when we are together. I love being able to do new things with him and see him happy and intrigued. There is never a dull moment with Caiden and I love that. He is hilarious and loves to entertain, and to me, he is the best form of entertainment around.
What do you most wish you could hold onto forever about Caiden being little? I do not want Caiden to grow up!! It kills me every time I have to buy him a new size of clothing or shoes because that is just another reminder to me that he is getting bigger. I wish I could hold onto his cuddles forever. I just love his little cheeks and even at age 3 those are starting to go away. I also wish I could hold onto his innocence. Right now, the worst thing in the world to him is not getting a popsicle. I wish so badly that I could know that he will never experience anything worse than that in his lifetime.
What are your child-rearing philosophies? Love, Patience and Understanding. Unconditional love given all of the time. I tell Caiden I love him probably 50 times a day, and I could do it more often. I do not think you can tell a kid you love them too much. Patience is going to be needed because kids will be kids. They will make you late, they will get food on their shirt right before picture day, they will do things that can drive you nuts. However, they are kids and at the end of the day, the things that can drive you crazy about them really aren't that big of a deal. Understanding that my kid is only 3 and will not know the answers to everything. Will not be perfect in every way. Will not always be in a great mood. Understanding he needs help and helping him grow in any form it takes is my job.
If you could give a word of advice or encouragement to other moms, what would it be? Enjoy your kids. Don't compare your kids to what other kids their age are doing, just enjoy what your kids can do. Also, spend as much time as possible with them. Not many things are more important than playing and interacting with your kids, so make them your priority and leave your chores/errands for later.
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ASHLEE LAUREN PHOTOGRAPHY provides both studio and outdoor, natural light photography in Indianapolis, Indiana. The studio in located in downtown Indy near the canal and IUPUI. Family photography, as well as newborn sessions, maternity pictures are provided.