Updated: May 14, 2021
If you asked me twelve years ago what it is like to be a mother, I wouldn't have had an answer for you. Granted my life partner and I thought about having a baby but to actually know what it would be like, was like asking me how does it feel to be an astronaut. Then on Easter 2010, I was given the first taste of what it is like to be a mother and it was glorious.
“Being a mom has made me so tired. And so happy.” - Tina Fey“
"Making a decision to have a child—it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.” —Elizabeth Stone
I was a 42 year old woman who just a few years prior was worried about what new car I was going to buy. I was getting into the stage of not being impressed by much thinking that I had experienced a lot, but how wrong I was. Whatever selfishness I had was about to be quickly erased. I now saw things through the eyes of innocence. Everything was new, everything was amazing. I saw beauty in places I had never seen it before.
"For when a child is born the mother also is born again.” —Gilbert Parker
For the first time I was responsible for a living thing (plants and pets early on in life excluded). I didn't even know how to change a diaper. Luckily my partner did as he had done that often for his younger sister. The connection that a child and mother have is indescribable. My partner would say when I was asleep if the baby stirred, I would stir even though we were in completely separate rooms.
There have been a lot of ups and downs on this amazing ride. I never knew I had so much to give even though I felt like I was completely tapped. I was making decisions that I never thought I would have to make and to be okay with the decisions that were made.
"Motherhood is a choice you make every day, to put someone else’s happiness and well-being ahead of your own, to teach the hard lessons, to do the right thing even when you’re not sure what the right thing is…and to forgive yourself, over and over again, for doing everything wrong.” —Donna Ball
So, I am 11 years into this magic carpet ride. He grows everyday, mind, spirit, and body. I can officially wear his outgrown jeans, t-shits and shorts. I use to feel well versed and educated, now I am being schooled on social media and how to use the television. When he gets on my nerves or tries to throw his weight around, I promptly remind him that I have no problem embarrassing him in front of his friends.
“Grown don’t mean nothing to a mother. A child is a child. They get bigger, older, but grown. In my heart it don’t mean a thing.”—Toni Morrison
Everyday is a new adventure and something new to learn or manage. Raising a brown native boy with a long braid in today's society comes with its own set of challenges. I want the best for my child, just like any other mother. Will he struggle just because of what he looks like and how he was raised? I cannot say, but I do believe in a world that appreciates diversity, unfortunately that world does not exist yet. I will continue to raise him to be kind, strong, and open. To defend his beliefs and to stand up for others. That in my mind is my responsibility and the only way we will change this world.
“Having kids—the responsibility of rearing good, kind, ethical, responsible human beings—is the biggest job anyone can embark on.” —Maria Shriver
Tomorrow is Mother's day. Celebrate your mother and thank her for all that she has done and always remember she did the best with what she had.
“Call your mother. Tell her you love her. Remember, you’re the only person who knows what her heart sounds like from the inside.” —Rachel Wolchin