By Amanda Collins Bernier

You know those moments when you wish you could just press pause? Since having my first child, Max, Iíve never wished more that life came with a remote control.

Last week, Max turned six months old, a milestone that seemed to sneak up way too quickly and made me realize how little time heíll be so little. That night, after his bath, I wrapped him in his fuzzy, hooded towel, cradled him on my lap, and tried to soak in all his sweet, fleeting baby-ness: his fuzzy head, those squishy legs, that still toothless gummy smile.

As he giggled and reached his pudgy little hand toward my face, I made a mental†note:†remember this moment.†It was sublime; everything I expected having a baby to be. And then... he pooped on me.

This, Iím learning, is motherhood.

In the short six months Iíve been a mom, Iíve found that every clichť you hear about parenting is right.

Itís a love like no other.

They grow so fast.

Itís the most rewarding thing youíll ever do.

Itís true, parenting is full of magical moments where you wish you could freeze time. But itís also full of spit up, poop, and sleepless nights (at least at this point). Parenthood is a paradox; a wonderfully crazy combination of the most intense love and the most difficult challenges. Itís amazing and meaningful and really hard.

Another thing about parenthood? Itís a community. Weíre all on a journey of joy and frustration, good days, and days when you wonder how you will make it to bedtime. Weíre learning, making mistakes, watching with wonder as our kids grow Ė and growing ourselves. None of us knows exactly what weíre doing (if you do, I want to hear from you!), but weíre figuring it out as we go.

Joining the team at baystateparent as†editor†couldnít have come at a better time in my life Ė Iím navigating the ups, downs and unknowns of parenthood just like our readers. So, Bay State parents, Iíd love to hear from you. Tell me your stories, share your moments, your #momwins, and your #parentingfails (hey, we all have them!). I invite you to email me at†amanda@baystateparent.com, or reach out on Facebook or Twitter.

I'm excited to get to share of all the sides of parenting with you Ė the good, the hard, and the poopy.