Wednesday, 30 April 2014

When I signed up to motherhood...

When I signed up to motherhood, I thought I knew full well what I was getting myself into.

I couldn't wait to hold that little bundle in my arms. To feel the surprisingly strong squeeze of that chubby hand around my finger. To see the gummy smile, and hear the soft coo's and ma-ma-ma's from that same mouth.

I knew I would pack the best school lunches. Be the shockingly embarrassing mum cheering from the front row of the school play. And I would spend extra time getting the grass stains out of clothes, only for them to be stained again, and again, and again during delirious play times.

I was happy to deal with the nappies, the vomit, the tears, the chopped off fingers, the sleepless nights, the cheekiness, the tantrums, the nights and days and weeks that I would have to be a solo-mum when my lovely husband is away with work, the time my toilet training toddler has an accident in the middle of the supermarket (which hasn't happened yet, by the way). I knew I could deal with all of those things, because I would also get to experience all the joys of being a mum as well.

So there I was, "signed up" and committed to this action-packed journey. And after all of that soul searching, the "am I ready for this?", "can we afford a family?" and "what will I do about my career?", my husband and I have been blessed with not one but two beautiful children. This body of mine is different now to when I started, but it has carried and fed two children - a miracle and blessing that is not lost on me.

This heart of mine is all the more bigger as a result of this love, for these two little people that the world was always supposed to meet. A love that cannot be explained in words. When I signed up to motherhood, I hoped I would feel this way but the reality is more amazing than I could ever have imagined.

But my soul... my soul was unprepared and will be forever changed.

My silly old soul. The one that has been devastated and elated at various times over the years, and is now finally back together again. The one that soars and sings when I see those two little faces every morning. And sinks, just a little bit, when I tuck them into bed at night knowing it will be hours until we get to chat again (I know, I'm weird).

The same soul that cries (and will forever more) when I hear about tragedies involving children, pets, parents - or anything that relates to families being broken. My soul knows now how much there is to lose.

Right now, I can give them everything they need - hugs, food, coloured blocks, walks in the park - you name it. Right now, I can protect them from the world, from the bullies, self-doubts, bad influences, or worse, that they may one day have to encounter. Their world just isn't that complicated - yet.

Right now, they are my two little babies sleeping upstairs in warm beds, with full tummies, busy minds and fluttering little hearts, that know their mummy and daddy love them. I wish I could keep them like that forever.

When I signed up to become a mother, I never thought about the fact that, one day, I'll have to let them go.
Credit: www.flickr.com/photos/ebonysweden/