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I am a mom because I have spent hours holding a baby so he’ll sleep while I go without. I am mom because I have spit up in my hair and on my shirt and I don’t mind. I am mom because I have spent hours holding back my daughter’s long hair while she puked. I am mom because my son has marked his territory…repeatedly…by peeing on me while changing countless diapers. I am mom because I have defended my child to teachers and bullies. I am mom because I hug my children when they’re good and reprimand then when they’re not. I am mom because I’ve survived insufferable heartburn through pregnancy and have the C-section scars & stretch marks to prove it. I am mom because I my clothes are from last season’s clearance rack while my kids’ are brand-spankin’ new. I am mom because my teenager can show me how to use any electronic device moments after purchase. I am mom because I could recite all of the words to countless children’s storybooks by heart. I am mom because I’ve been wounded by the words “You’re the meanest mom in the world” and have sometimes worn that title as a badge of honour. I am mom because I proudly film my child’s school shows with the video camera. I am mom because I play them back with pride. I am mom because I take my children to museums, historical villages and the theatre, as well as to Chuck E. Cheese and the waterparks. I am mom because I’ve served my children Mac ‘n Cheese with Kool-Aid for lunch, but Filet Mignon & asparagus for dinner. I am mom because I’ve ran along side a bike without training wheels. I am mom because my son will know how to cook & clean a toilet. I am mom because my daughter will know how to change a tire on a car and use a drill. I am mom because I’ve gone without food so my child would have something to eat. I am mom because when I hear of a child being shot or molested, I hold my children tight and then teach them how to be aware of the evils of the world. I am mom because I encourage my children to succeed, but let them know that sometimes we all fail. I am mom because I’ve taught my children to love.