Dear mama,

Lean in close, I’m going to inform you of the best kept “secret” to maintaining your sanity in the midst of these early years of parenting. Besides wine, coffee and Netflix there is one thing that helps keep me grounded and helps me to be overall better mom.

Her picture hangs in a photo collage hanging on my living room wall, standing proudly next to me on the biggest day of my life before becoming a mom—my wedding day. There’s another one of her in that same collage—two of us smiling in front of a tree, young and carefree barely out of our teens.

The key to staying happy as a mom: having a best friend.

We all need that one friend, the one who knew us before we were the center of the universe to tiny humans. She knew our hopes, dreams, and secrets before motherhood became our number one role in life.

She saw us at our worst and was there to listen and comfort us during those times. But, she’s also seen us at our best and celebrated our victories alongside us.

After a month of hard—days that seemed like they’d never end, sickness that hit everyone in the house, home renovations that messed up kids’ routines and a winter that never wanted to give up—one afternoon spent with her can return you to your center simply because she’s your person.

She loves you regardless of your downfalls. She loves your kids because they are a part of you. She lets you complain about your husband, but also knows how much you love him and would be lost without him. She knows your family and which ones drive you crazy. She knows these things because she has been a part of it—all of it.

You are there for each other. Through it all. You’ve traveled together, danced together, grown up together. She could be your best friend from childhood, your college roommate or the first friend you made in your new town; either way, she’s the person that listens to you, loves you despite your flaws, and makes you feel like your old self again.

See each other as often as possible. Go on adventures. Laugh until your face hurts. Be each other’s biggest supporters. Each other’s outlets to the outside world.

Love her, mama. Hold her close. This is special. A once-in-a-lifetime friendship. Cherish it. Honor it. You’ll be so happy that you did.

A mom in the thick of motherhood

Originally published on These Boys of Mine by Britt LaBoeuf 

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Britt LeBoeuf

Britt is a married mother of two from northern New York. She has an undergraduate degree in Human Services. When she's not chasing down her two young children, she writes for sites such as Her View From Home, Scary Mommy, Filter Free Parents and Sammiches and Psych Meds. Check out her first published book, "Promises of Pineford" on Amazon too. On her blog, These Boys of Mine, she talks about parenting only boys, special needs parenting, mental health advocacy, being a miscarriage survivor and life as a crazy cat lady.