With my second celebration of Mother’s Day as a mama quickly approaching, I can not help but think about how much has changed over the last two years. August of 2015 I started my senior year of high school, completely oblivious to the most beautiful flower growing inside me. That October I found out I was pregnant. Then, everything changed in March of 2016 when I gave birth to my precious baby boy, Matthew. My biggest concern went from where I would be attending school the next fall to how I would be supporting a new baby in just a few short months. I wouldn’t change a single thing about the sudden shift in direction my life took a couple years ago for I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for that day I stood in the Whole Foods bathroom holding a positive pregnancy test I was sure had to be faulty.
Becoming a mother is easily the best thing that has ever happened to me. It’s effortless typing that as Matthew currently sits at my feet giggling, but it’s not so easy saying that when I need to get ready for school or work and for a second being a mother feels like an inconvenience. It’s not so easy saying that when he’s sick and cries all day or I come home exhausted and all I want is to sit and read for a few minutes. It’s hard when I still feel the shame of becoming pregnant or my mind wanders and I consider how my life would be different if I had never gotten pregnant. I question myself as a mother constantly. I compare myself to this or that mama and think I must be doing something wrong. I regret not being immediately excited when I found out I was pregnant. I wish I had been able to breastfeed longer and I wish I wasn’t still trying to accept my “post-baby” body. All us moms could go on and on about the things we wish we could change, but the truth is, we put too much pressure on ourselves. Society likes to feed us there is one way to be a mother: happily married and above the age of 22, gracefully raising your babies with nothing but giggle filled days and sleep filled nights, but the reality of motherhood is so far from that. Becoming a mother is without a doubt incredibly demanding. The first time you hold your baby in your arms your whole world changes. Your wants and your needs suddenly come second to your baby’s. Learning to live my life for someone else was the most difficult lesson my 17 year old self had to grasp. Becoming a mother is challenging, but it is never a burden or an inconvenience.
At a turning point in my pregnancy I began to understand it for what it truly is–a miracle. The technicalities of conception are so beyond the limitations of this world. Everything concerning pregnancy drips divinely touched. I began to understand what an honor becoming a mother truly is. There is no greater reward than pouring all your love into your innocent child. There is nothing more fulfilling than living selflessly for this gift you have been given. The good times definitely outweigh the testing times. For every tantrum there are three moments of cuddles and pure love. It’s easy as a mom to fear you are doing something wrong or even question your role as a parent, but the reality is every mom is the perfect mama for her babies. They are uniquely knit for you and you for them.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the powerful women who have taken on the role of mama.