This thing called motherhood is not for the faint of heart. As we approach what is considered the mother’s day rush in my business I have been quite reflective of late.
As a young girl, I loved children. Babies. Toddlers. Littles. I dreamt of being a teacher and a mom. Having small lives of my own to care for. To love. It was as much of my planning as my career path.
This thing called motherhood is not for the faint of heart.
When we got married and found ourselves expecting within the first 8 months I was surprised, a bit overwhelmed…but never scared. No one could have told me what it would be like to grow a life inside me. To feel his feet pressing against my ribs. Watch his tiny head roll across my belly. I found myself staring at my swelling middle – mesmerized and overflowing with love for this child I still didn’t really know. The day he arrived I found a love I didn’t know existed. Watching his gaze meet mine. Cradling to my breast. Flesh of my flesh. Bone of my bone. A part of me. A mother’s love is fierce and beautiful.
I poured myself into motherhood while trying to balance a very busy graphic design career. I read every book. Followed “all the rules”. I wanted to be so present. I celebrated every milestone. Wiped that ever running nose. Threw ball after ball after ball. And then. Six months later I found myself expecting again. And then again. And again.
Each pregnancy gave me that same sense of awe and wonder and love. Each felt like the first time. Just when I thought I couldn’t love anymore…I did. These gifts. These children. Such a part of my heart and soul. A part of me walking around outside of my body with their own set of emotions and feelings and personalities. Sometimes it just seemed surreal.
A mother’s love is fierce and beautiful.
I never intended to be a homeschool mom. It just happened. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I failed. Often. But it was also the best thing…truly the best thing…in my life…I’ve ever done. I knew these small people. These gifts of mine. I understood them. I felt their feels. I hurt when they hurt. I watched them grow and learn and be. My heart soared.
Then sometimes life gets hard. Adulting is hard. Tough things happen. And it’s hard to be all things for all people. I had a season of tremendous mom failure. I am an extremely passionate, feeling human. I often take things to the extreme. I often feel too much. It’s a blessing and a curse. As they grew I wanted to let go and watch them fly off on their own. Yet I feel like part of me just didn’t know how to let go. It’s almost like a surgical procedure. Removing a part of yourself without anesthesia. Feeling the intense pain. Feeling the loss. Then the sense of accomplishment that you were able to do it at all. Messy. Imperfect.
Motherhood. It is the toughest job I could have ever asked for. You are raising humans. Full-fledged functioning humans. And when you see them making adult decisions of their own, you can’t help but swell with pride. Knowing you were given the privilege of taking part in getting them there. My job? Still not done. Not that it will ever be done-done. I will always be their mom. Their biggest advocate. Their first love. For all of my time on this earth.
The hard part? Now? They don’t know. Sometimes that is really heavy for me if I’m honest. But. I didn’t know either. I had no idea the sacrifices, the extreme love my mom and dad had given to me. The pain and frustration they felt. My parents showed me how to love my own children like this. My only hope is that maybe one day, my own little loves will see it too.
I know Mother’s Day raises all sorts of mixed emotions. Not everyone has been blessed with a caring mother figure. But maybe there was someone who played that role in your life. Who loved you that way. I think it is a day to celebrate them. Most likely we will never know all the sacrifices they made for us. I like to think of Mother’s Day as a “want to”, not a “have to”. A chance to recognize. Pay tribute to. Honor. That is what I hope for….someday.
So as I begin my Mother’s Day season, creating the jewelry to celebrate mom…I just wanted to share a bit of my heart with you. Thank you for reading. And to my mom? I love you with all my heart. And to all the mother figures out there…you rock…truly. And to my 4 small people…thank you for allowing me the gift of being your mom. It is my one great accomplishment. I love each of you so.very.much.