When you’re in day-to-day parenting mode—the cereal ground into the carpet, the car exploding with sports equipment, the backpack that you haven’t rifled through since April—it’s tough to step back and appreciate your work. But it’s almost Mother’s Day, and you deserve to revel a bit. In that spirit, we asked moms to share their proudest moments.

“I was at my son’s kindergarten parent-teacher conference. The teacher told me that she had asked the class if they knew anything about Christopher Columbus or Columbus Day. Apparently, my son was the only one to speak up, but she said he was shy and seemed worried that he would get in trouble. When she said that, I started to get worried too! She continued and told me that my son answered, in regards to Columbus Day, ‘Well, it’s kinda inappropriate. It should be called Indigenous Peoples’ Day.’ He then proceeded to tell them everything he knew about what Columbus actually did—how he did horrible things to the native people of the Caribbean Islands and never even set foot in America. I was so impressed because I had only talked about it with him and his younger brother once or twice before. We hear about how kids are natural scientists and engineers because they are such curious, inquisitive and creative thinkers. This incident made me realize that, armed with facts about history and current events, children are also natural activists. They have a strong grasp on fairness, even if their sense of empathy is still developing.”


“My 9-year-old was being teased by a kid in class, and the kid called him weird. He turned to him and said, ‘I’m not weird, I’m limited edition.'”

“I have one that sounds like it’s made up, it’s so goosebump-inducing: My son, when he was 6 years old and learning about Pesach during his first year of Hebrew school, asked me in dead seriousness: ‘Mommy, why didn’t God send plagues to stop Hitler from hurting the Jews like he did with Pharaoh?’ My little precocious rabbinic scholar! I was so amazingly proud. I have many more about both my kids, but that one really sticks out for me.”

“I was teaching both my kids, daughter and son, to cook and bake. One night my daughter made dinner. She wanted to try something new, so I had helped her find a new recipe. When we sat down to eat dinner, my son turned up his nose at a new meal, but his sister was having none of that. She told him that it was all things he liked, that she had worked hard making it and he needed to try it before he knew if he’d like it—basically parroting my words. Here’s to having one adventurous kid, anyway!”

“My grandmother, my kids’ great-grandmother, turned 90 in January, and I took all three, including my new 6-week-old—the other two are ages 3 and 5—to Florida to surprise her by myself. I guess I should pick something that I’m proud of my kids for, but successfully executing that trip made me feel like Wonder Woman.”

“Coming downstairs on a snow day and realizing both kids were laying in bed reading to themselves. The little one just learned how this year. Bookworm pride.”

“Hands down, the biggest surprise and proudest moment as a mom involves being able to breastfeed my son for 15 months. I wasn’t passionate about breastfeeding; I had many friends for whom it didn’t work out, so I tried to be mentally flexible, and I had a job that had me moving out of the office a lot. I just feel really fortunate that it worked out for us, and still very much understand that it’s not workable for everyone. But it really is the thing I am most proud of as a mother and beyond.”

“We are very politically active and our kids have been to over a dozen rallies, marches and protests. This year for the Women’s March my daughter, age 5, created her own sign. It had a picture of two people: one said ‘stop’ and the other said ‘okay.’ She was illustrating consent.”

“One of my proudest moments was when my son saw a group of kids picking on a little boy with hearing aids. He walked over to the group of boys and said, ‘Please leave him alone, he’s my friend.’ The other boys all said ‘sorry’ and walked away. This was my son’s first day of kindergarten. I was so proud to see him be kind when everyone else was being unkind. He is still friends with that boy today.”