From ‘I’ to ‘we’ to ‘all’

Trust yourself on this miraculous journey of motherhood

The Happiness Formula_Spring 2021_The writer’s sons, Alex, Jordie and Robert_Photo Courtesy Kita Szpak

Nothing can totally prepare you for motherhood. No book, no seminar, no friend, no other mother—even your own—can begin to give you a sense of the enormity of being a parent. Yes, you can prepare logically for all that is to be, but giving life to your baby, and then living life with your child is beyond logical and linear happenstance. It is truly miraculous…and unbelievably challenging.

Motherhood changed me. No question. How, you ask? Catapulted from the neighbourhood of “I” to “we” in the space of hours. Now sleeping on someone else’s time, not to mention everything else—and some would add, for the next decade or so. Put the latter on repeat, if siblings make an appearance (which two of them eventually did in our household).

I think I lived in sweats (they were pink) that were burped on for a number of years. It was hard for me to always be on—to be available to my three boys no matter how I felt. Watching Daddy go to work while I stayed home…how I wished I could fit in his briefcase. I struggled mightily against this dynamic even though I had always wanted kids. The issue wasn’t having the boys—I loved and love them very much. The issue was adjusting from taking care of me to taking care of a trio of little ones plus one big one.  But you know, one day the struggle ended. The dynamic was unchanged. So, what was different?

In a word: me. I accepted my reality—the one I had helped create. I went from a microcosm of one to a mini-macrocosm of five. I stopped swimming against the tide and let it lift me into the identity of motherhood.

Without a doubt, you have experienced some of what I’ve described in lesser or greater measure. I applaud you for your time as a Mom. It is a big deal. And you know what? I admire you even more because of the times we are in now. Never before has motherhood been under as much stress to help the children of today become wonderful adults of tomorrow.

Where can you stretch your reality to give yourself some respite and solace when you need it? Extended family for sure, however, let’s take this even further: take that family of yours, that mini-macrocosm into the macrocosm that is community. Despite today’s restrictions, venture where you can and ensure your kids know there are friendly neighbours, dedicated teachers, supportive businesses, areas to have fun in, and natural settings of beauty and wonder to visit. Partake and let all in the community become the bond that strengthens you—the one and only mom, and your family in the days to come. Just imagine, letting your children develop to become wonderful individuals beyond the local to our all-encompassing global community. Everything is possible when you are a mother.  I know this for a fact.