I wish I had known how much I would love being a mother. How could I have anticipated the depth of this love?
My heart opens with wonder when I watch my 21-month-old son lift his arms, snap his fingers, and sway to music. Any music. We could be in the check out line at Walgreens and if he hears music, he lifts his arms in praise.
Oh, the world is good to him. Despite the little, blue bruise on his forehead from a sad encounter with the edge of an antique bureau, it’s a loving world overall. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to be a gentle and consistent source of kindness as he learns to speak, share, swim, and jump. May he internalize my love and bring it forth as an inner light in days to come, days when I am no longer by his side to wipe away the tears of sad encounters.
A foundation for trust is being built. I am his “secure base” and he then sets off to explore this magical world full of lizards, rocks, leaves, and scrumptious raisins. I draw upon the wisdom of nature. We co-sleep and he nurses on demand. His organic rhythms are honored.
I love being a stay-at-home mom.
I didn’t anticipate this.
Throughout my pregnancy, I confidently proclaimed I would be a working mom. Never once anticipating the powerful reality of mother-child attachment, I totally was unprepared for the emotional opening and heartfelt wisdom that transformed me upon my son’s birth.
Shifting from two full-time incomes to one hasn’t been easy. Yet, my husband and I know that it’s all about priorities. Investing in the intangibles that form the foundation of emotional and spiritual health matter most. The tangible items mean far less. We are both committed to offering our son the best environment possible for his early development. I feel blessed beyond words that this means he spends his days learning, loving, and living with me.
I am so grateful for my husband. He sacrifices many hours away from us in order to be the financial heavyweight. I find creative ways of bringing in some extra money too. For example, my son and I teach Mommy and Me Yoga together. We stretch, sing, dance, and play with other mamas and little ones. It’s delightful.
And when my son sleeps, I write.
I write and weave together story, philosophy, and gratitude. I knit the love I feel into the words appearing on my computer screen. I smile, marvel, and sigh as tears and syntax flow.
These precious early years are priceless. They are worth more than all of the world’s gold. We are investing in the future emotional health of this little one. We are investing in the health of all of those who will one day cross his path. I’ve never worked harder to stay-at-home. On good days, I smile at the irony of it.
I didn’t anticipate this and yet, I embrace it with determination and grace.