I might not “know” you; we may never have spoken; but sister, I am with you.
Maybe I walked past you in the store and our shoulders touched. Maybe we smiled and said “hi” in a coffee line. Maybe I complimented you on your purse or your jeans or your hair. Maybe we brushed against each other for three seconds out of the 2,207,520,000 seconds in an average lifetime. We do not know each other, but that’s beside the point. Sister, I am with you. This life is too hard and complicated and beautiful and painful to be anything other than with each other.
When you were a brand new baby you made little grunting noises from your bed. It would start with that, then turn into crying. I’d swaddle you or nurse you and lay you back down…dreaming of when you’d go to sleep. “Please sleep, baby,” I’d whisper to your soft bald head.
Your eyes would finally close and you’d be whisked away into itty bitty baby dreams. I’d stare at you for a minute, savoring the sweet still silence so my thoughts could collect again…and then I’d miss you. When will you wake up? I’d wonder to myself. “Wake up sweet baby,” I’d whisper, “I miss you.”
I’m just a girl in sweat pants with a period stain and a luke warm cup of coffee. The only thing I am an expert on is spot cleaning yoga pants, dry shampoo, and keepin’ it real. I know you’re probably wondering what I did to win at life like this and I have to break it to you; IT HAS NOT BEEN EASY. You cannot just get these dark circles under your eyes all easy peasy. This has taken a lot of hard work, determination, and unprotected sex.
I took this picture today because I want to remember the messy, hard, falling apart days of mothering.
This is me after one of my kids had a giant public meltdown. The kind where I carried her flailing and kicking past teachers and students, and then put on a little show in the corner of the school yard for all who enjoy watching a mom try and tame a wildcat.
Don’t enjoy every moment. Instead, find one moment a day to cherish.
I want to level with you: It’s hard to let the crumbs be, the future be, the to-do list be, the wrestling with demons just BE.
It’s hard to be still. It’s hard to be present. I wish it wasn’t, but it is.
Have you ever felt tiny fingers massage your shoulders? Have you ever pressed your face against a ponytail that smells of sunshine and wild whimsy? Have you ever listened to the off key tune from a 7yo lost in her own world? Have you ever brushed against magic and forgot in an instant what it felt like?
This motherhood it has floored me; it has undone me, and I still forget. In seconds, I forget.
When I watch them lost in a game of make believe or they tell me a story that makes me realize they’re growing up, I remember. I remember the privilege it is to be a part of this story, this unfolding adventure.