This is part two in an ongoing series I'm taking part of- #TogetherWeMother. I'm joining up with ten other mothers to share our collective experiences on a monthly topic. I'm really excited to be a part of this, and I hope you'll check out all of the other posts too, linked at the bottom. This month's topic is all about the moment we found out we were going to become a Mom.
There are these moments in our lives- markers- where there is a distinct before and after. Sometimes it's hard to even remember what life was like in those "before" times, everything seeming so much more full in the after, and then other times it might be hard to even look back. Life is funny like that- you don't always realize when it's happening, but sometimes you get lucky and are able to experience these transformative moments while acknowledging them at the very same time.
I can still remember the day I found out I was going to become a mother. We were living in our tiny home downtown and had just returned from a weekend away. Hank and I had been together for years at that point and our life was easy and breezy as newlyweds. He was touring with his band, I was teaching high school English, we were content to live in our little home and do as we pleased like the young twenty-somethings we were. But soon babies became a part of our conversation. Was this the right time? Did we really want to go for it? I'd known I'd wanted to be a mother forever, but actually putting that dream into motion seemed a bit scary.
But then suddenly there we were. It was early, maybe 5:30am, when I woke up excited because it was finally the day I could take a pregnancy test and maybe, possibly know. I opened the packaging quietly (small house, teeny tiny bathroom, Hank still asleep), and took the test. Minutes later...there it was...the faintest line. A positive. A yes. A YES! I can still remember waiting a minute, sitting there on the fluffy, white bathroom rug. I read the instructions over again. Maybe the line meant negative, maybe I wasn't seeing it correctly. I couldn't be! But yes, it was positive. There was a baby growing inside of my body, everything we had dreamed of, and there I was, in that very moment. Life was about to change. And there we were.
I ran down the hall to our bedroom, heart pounding, jumped on the bed and woke up Hank- "WE'RE PREGNANT!"
And so it began.
That morning has been the most distinct before and after I've ever experienced in my life, and definitely one of the most beautiful. It's so much more than that moment too- it's the past seven years all rolled into one, overarching feeling- I am a mother. It changes you, whether you grow the child inside of your body or meet your child later. Who you were before is still there, but even in that first moment, you start to change.
When you begin to live completely for love, nourishing someone else, responsible for keeping them safe and warm and fed, something shifts. Your heart grows in ways you might have never thought possible, and in my case, I grew a greater love for myself too. As time went on, I saw myself in a new light- through the beautiful warmth in my children's eyes- and that on its own has been one of the most life-changing and profound experiences of my life. Nursing my newborn as we stared at one another, playing with my one-year-old on the floor as he laughed, holding his hands as he looked up and smiled, learning to walk. Later having two babies snuggled in bed, one on each side, two very different people but both with the capacity to love so hard. And they see me- they really see me, and through them I have learned what it means to love unconditionally and without boundary.
Today I have those two babies in bed with me, but now their hands are on my belly, feeling their little brother or sister move around, 19 weeks and growing by the minute. When I first learned I would become a mother I never dreamed of this. I couldn't have ever imagined two little boys here, with another sweet baby on the way. I couldn't have ever envisioned how I would have changed and grown myself, from that very moment sitting on the bathroom floor, taking a silent moment to let it all sink in. I think back to that morning and I can't help but feel emotional and grateful, and in awe of how far we've all come. The before sure was sweet, but the after couldn't be any better if I dreamed it up myself.
Be sure to check out the inspiring women also taking part in this project, and read their posts as well: