Read this if you are a mother, wish to be one, or have decided motherhood is not for you.
A few weeks after I met my now husband, we stopped during a walk on a beautiful summer day to sit on a park bench where I quietly told him that no matter what, I would be a mother one day. I didn’t know exactly how or exactly when, but I knew it would happen. I told him (almost tearfully) that I was already a mother in my heart and that it was just a matter of time before that role become a physical reality one way or another. That man nodded, took my hand and we kept walking…
I’m not sure why things happen the way they do. People say everything happens for a reason (this is usually said about disappointments or tragedies) but I don’t believe that. I believe many sad things happen randomly and we have to choose to either evolve, learn, heal and have faith in ourselves and our place in the universe, or, to just shut down. Choosing to shut down closes all doors. Choosing to stay open leaves at least one door open a tiny crack…slowly that door creaks open and then another open door pops up, and another, and another…
The thing is, that man already had a beautiful eight-year old son. But a door had opened for him as well…and soon enough we started our own little family with our daughter Nova.
Motherhood isn’t for everyone and I don’t think it should or has to be.
I have so many women in my life who are loving, nurturing and caring without having had a baby. But I have always wanted to be a mother. Not in a I-have-the nursery-planned kind of way (who am I kidding, Nova was almost 2 years old before her room was semi instagram-ready), but in an I NEED to be a mother kind of way. And when you feel a need for something, it is very difficult to accept the fact that you just might not get it. At almost forty, I was coming to the point where I was being challenged to accept that motherhood in the form that I had imagined it, might not be in my cards. So meeting my husband and the subsequent birth of my daughter, is for me, a true miracle.
I can vividly recall the pain I felt watching friends around me start families, welcoming little ones into their lives. While I was truly happy for their joy, the sadness I felt was visceral. It was a deep feeling of loss without ever having had anything to actually lose. So this Mother’s Day, I will look into my husband’s and daughter’s eyes and thank them for what they have brought to my life today. For giving me the opportunity to step into a role that feels so natural that I don’t have to think about it.
This Mother’s Day I will also think of all the women who have struggled and are struggling to become mothers in the traditional sense. Or who have lost their little ones and are struggling to be mothers (because they still are!) without them. Or have separated from their partners and now have to be part-time mothers (from a time perspective) vs full-time ones. Or daughters who have lost their moms too soon.
If a mother’s role is to encourage, guide and love then I’ve met many mothers in my life, whether they have children or not.
I think of my dear friend Angela who is wise, empathetic and soulful and has cried with me while I cried. I think of my sweet, caring friend Sandi who wasn’t sure she even wanted a baby for the longest time but then created a little human who embodies all the best of her. I think of my sister, whose pure auntie-love has already filled my daughter with such joy. I think of my friend Fiona who bravely ventured into motherhood on her own.
And of course there is my own mother, who after our father passed away over twenty years ago, taught us by example how to persevere, have courage and take care of ourselves well. As we get older we are only starting to realize what she did to make sure we were more than just ok…she gave us what we needed to find strength and happiness no matter what.
Whether you are already a mother, wish to be one or have decided that motherhood in the traditional sense is not for you, let’s celebrate and foster in one another all the best that mothers represent – feminine strength, soulful wisdom and unconditional love.