This photo is one of my very favorites of my children. It was taken when Lily was three, and Cameron only a month old. When I think of my children in my ‘mind’s eye’, this is how I see them. Although it’s been nearly 12 years, I still see them at this stage in their life–full of wonder, trust, and love.
Not to say that all that is gone now, but as they’ve grown taller (than me), matured, and have begun moving through their lives, some of that childish innocence has gotten pushed back into my memory. Still to me, mamawolfe, I see them as in this image. Ready for what the world has to show them, ready to be wrapped in loving arms, ready to be embraced by life’s experiences.
I remember wondering how I was going to navigate motherhood with two babies. The delivery nurse warned my mother that women like me ‘had a hard time’ because we were used to being in control. I was sure that wouldn’t be the case. As it turned out, my daughter wasn’t the easiest infant-everything had to be ‘just so’-maybe a little bit of nurture mixed in with nature? Luckily before Cameron was born she turned into a wonderful, independent toddler. The ‘terrible twos’ were non-existent in our house. My son, born a bit premature, was thankfully a ‘goo-ball’ of delight. He loved to be held and cuddled any old way, which turned out to be my saving grace. Somehow, I muddled through infancy and toddlerhood.
What I’ve learned is that motherhood isn’t something that you can program, or plan, or predict. It just is. When I tried to make things happen the way the books, or the friends, or the family said they should be I was miserable. When I gave in to motherhood and stopped trying to control, everything usually went much more smoothly. What I’m still learning is that as my children grow, mature, and become independent, I need to remember them as they are in my ‘mind’s eye’, and not try to mold them into what I think they should be. I need to give in to motherhood, even with teenagers, and hopefully, things will go smoothly.
So far, it’s been pretty darn great.