Today I celebrate my first Mother’s Day.
It’s kind of a big moment for me. I’m going to be spending it running (*cough cough* speed walking) a 5km while David and Jack wait for me at the finish line. Whether it takes me 30 minutes or 45, it doesn’t matter. I’m going to have an enormous smile plastered over my face.
This big date looming has made me pause and reflect. First of all, I know how incredibly lucky I am. So many women struggle to get pregnant or to adopt, or they just never get the opportunity. I know many women waiting patiently for their moment to become a mother. Know that I know I am lucky. I don’t take it for granted.
Here is what I’ve learned in the 137 days that I’ve been a mother.
We’ll talk about fathers on Father’s Day, so don’t think that I’m ignoring them, but today is for all the incredible, heroic women out there.
Motherhood is no joke. It’s the hardest job I’ve ever had, and yes, it often feels like a job. You try to keep your house from being a bomb site, in my case you constantly battle the need to do dishes or sterilize bottles, and your to-do list is never ending. I’m not sure about other children, but mine used to cry for three hours on end, so it felt like a marathon in mental survival.
In these 137 days I’ve both been at rock bottom and on the biggest high. I’ve both felt like a failure, and felt extremely confident. Motherhood, in my limited experience, seems to be this never ending see-saw of emotions.
But the smiles? The look that is just for you? It’s gold. Being able to soothe your baby when nobody else can? Incredibly rewarding. Listening to them slowly breathe in and out while they sleep? Joyous.
What I’ve realized in the past few months is not so much about myself, but about all the other mothers out there. Mothers are heroes. They are rock stars. They make so many sacrifices, large and small, for their children.
To my sister-in-law. You are an incredible mother. You teach your girls about diversity, help them make their own decisions, let them fall and pick themselves back up, and the love that you give them every single day is astounding.
To my own mother. You’re braver than you think. I appreciate you more than you know.
To my friends who are about to become mothers. You are on an incredible journey. You’ll be different on the other side, and that’s okay.
To the girls from my Birth and Babies class. We’re all walking our own, different motherhood journey, but I’m proud of how we’re all rocking it in our own unique ways. Your babies are lucky and much loved.
There are so many different kinds of mothers out there, and they’re all incredible. Single moms, working moms. Stay at home moms, mothers of adopted children. Foster moms, empty-nester moms, step moms. Moms who breastfeed, moms who bottle-feed. Moms-to be, women struggling with infertility. Moms of babies with colic, moms of 12-hour a night sleepers. Moms with postpartum depression or anxiety. Moms of one, moms of many. The list goes on, but the common denominator is that they’re all incredibly hard-working women. They are my heroes.
We’re raising little people, the hardest of any job out there. There’s no real yard stick for whether or not we’re doing it ‘right’, which makes it that much harder. If I get nothing else ‘right’ in this journey, there are two things above all that I want to give to this kid.
Time and love.
We can figure out the rest together.
Much love to all on mother’s day.