Three Months into Motherhood
Mothering without a map has proved to be more challenging that I ever imagined. I have waited for what feels like, my whole life to be a mother. I can remember at an early age being able to make the distinction between good and bad parenting. It was always something I was evaluating and refining for when I was given the opportunity to have children. I have read countless books, articles and blogs that have all informed the ways I wanted to raise my daughter. All in an effort to undo the mothering that was done to me. It has taken me years to extend grace to my biological mother but it wasn’t until Willow as born that I started to extend that grace to myself.
Raised by a mother who lacked that motherly instinct made me worried I would as well once I had a family of my own. Would I be warm enough, gentle enough to create a space of peace and security for my own daughter? These questions haunted me and Willow was many weeks old before I found some relief.
It was in the nighttime feedings that I found my motherly intuition. It was when my fuel was low and her needs were high that I was able to tap into the peace and security I wanted to offer my daughter. Nighttime is now ours. In our dimly lit nursery, Willow nightly reminds me of my successes as a mother. The gentle ways she wakes and waits in expectation for me to attend to her needs and the way she smiles when she sees that I again, showed up to help her. There is no sweeter joy than calming your baby with simply your presence. And this is a skill that cannot be taught in a book or class.
Willow has taught me more in the last three months than I ever could have imagined and changed me in more ways than I could ever name. I am more myself now that Willow is here. I am whole in ways I didn’t know I was incomplete; bolder yet softer, driven and more joyful than ever before.
Being a mother is my greatest accomplishment. And being a positive map for Willow, if she should chose to me a mother, is my greatest goal.