"Motherhood: The hardest job I've ever done!" by Courtney Vallejo (CatholicMom.com) Copyright 2017 Courtney Vallejo. All rights reserved.

Motherhood has easily become the hardest thing I've ever done in my whole life. Now I know I'm only 36 so it's not like I'm 100, but still, 36 is old enough to have accomplished a few things. . . .

I have an undergraduate degree which I earned in 4 years while the average graduation rate was 6.

I have a Master’s in Film Production. I worked during the day, went to school from 4-10 pm, had countless late nights and weekends of shooting films.

I have a CA teaching credential and survived teaching junior high.

[tweet "Nothing is as hard--and as rewarding--as being a mom."]

But NOTHING is as hard as being a mom and with that, nothing is as rewarding as having the amazing opportunity of watching my kids grow up and being able to be a part of their life.

My husband and I have decided to homeschool our kids so now I've taken my teaching background and am trying to figure out how to be “mom” and “teacher.” I'm hoping that the anonymous person was right when they said "whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."

And in all the craziness of meltdowns and whining and biting a sibling, I sat down with my struggling reader today and he read me a book! A book, an actual book, and he didn't have to sound out every word! His speech actually flowed while he read! And I gloated a bit, because I've taught him to read.

There are these individuals living with me, who aren't my roommates, I'm not married to them, yet my whole being works to make them better people. I strive to teach them how to exhibit patience and empathy, although I feel like many days I fail to show them both.

It’s no easy task to be patient with a kid who is melting down over getting the wrong color bowl for snack. How do I encourage him and reassure him that he's going to be ok? In his world, the sky is falling. I try to relate. How did I feel when I got handed an assignment at work that I didn’t want to do? While the color of the bowl might seem to me, like a ridiculous reason to tantrum, to him it’s everything and I have to understand that.

In those moments of a scraped knee, a math assignment that’s too hard, an argument with a friend or a fight with a sibling, my children need someone who will love them, teach them, encourage them and support them. Nothing replaces being able to run in when they're crying at 3 am to comfort them, even if they just needed a drink of water. My heart is filled when they reach to me to pick them up if they’ve fallen down because I’ve taught them they can trust that I’ll take care of them. Many days, it takes everything in me to be present to them but I know the time is flying by. I was just dropping one of my children off at preschool and now I’m teaching them 3rd grade math. I only have a short time to enjoy them and build them up to go out into that big world. I pray that I can do it with love and empathy. But wow--some days, I just want hide in the bathroom until my husband comes home!

Copyright 2017 Courtney Vallejo