Motherhood is beautiful torture.
It’s worrying, from the minute you see those two pink lines. Maybe you have been trying and trying and you can’t believe it’s real, but you worry it isn’t. Maybe you got lucky, you hardly tried. Is it too good to be true? Maybe you didn’t plan this, and you worry you aren’t ready.
It’s going to the 10-week appointment and worrying you won’t see the heartbeat. It’s worrying about your birth—physically, one of the hardest things you might ever do. Will it hurt? Will it go how you planned? (It won’t,) Will everything be okay?
Fast forward to having a 1-year-old who empties your cabinets, drops plates on his toes, gets knocked down by the dog, eats a LEGO, won’t eat a vegetable . . . and you worry.
Now that tiny baby is three, and wait, preschool? What? You worry where the time went, you worry you aren’t appreciating it enough. You worry what school Montessori? Everyone offers you opinions and stories, and you worry you aren’t making the right choices.
Now it’s kindergarten registration, and you worry. What if the teacher is mean? What if they have a potty accident? What if they choke? What if they miss me too much? What if they don’t miss me at all?
The entire way it’s beautiful torture because among all that worry it’s also . . .
The newborn smell—so amazing it can never be replicated. Like your baby truly had to come from Heaven to smell that good, with nails as sharp as razors on those tiny little hands. Nights at 3 a.m. when the entire world is sleeping and all you can do is stare at that face.
It’s toddler curls, so perfect—why can’t we all have hair like that? Chubby toes you can’t stop kissing. Misspoken words that only you can understand.
Seeing that 3-year-old face light up in the preschool pickup line. Footsteps thundering down the hall when dad gets home from work.
It’s kindergarten boys chasing in the basement, a little 5-year-old in overalls brushing her pony, going to the movies as a family, watching someone you love so much experience something for the very first time. Swimming with cousins on a summer day. Families you meet along the way. Tennis tournament on a weekend. A quiet piano practice happening in the basement. Bringing a new puppy home.
Watching them ride off on their bike with their friend, hearing them sing at the end of the year concert, watching them get knocked down at lacrosse and then get up and score a goal.
The most beautiful torture . . . worrying, living, letting go.