Though we planned to have Baby V, I didn’t know if I was truly ready. That said, I think I’m missing that switch. The “really truly ready for motherhood” switch. The longing and desire to be a mom just never kicked in. I used to worry that there was something wrong with me. I used to worry that I wouldn’t love this tiny human when he/she arrived. I used to worry that I wouldn’t be a good mom. I used to worry, worry, worry… about me. Now I worry for him, in all the good ways that I get to worry because I get to be his mom. My heart will never be the same in the best kind of way that I never could have imagined.
When I was at the Urgent Care up the street from our house for a drop-in Strep test (in case you were curious this was Round 3 for Strep with a 4 day reprieve from antibiotic regimens between 2 and 3), I had a little time to peruse some back issues of WebMD magazine. I already had Strep, why not peruse some germ-infested hard copy magazines while I was waiting?! (Plus my iPhone battery died – I was desperate to pass the time).
I stumbled upon a great Q&A with Lisa Ling. My favorite was this:
What has surprised you most about motherhood? “That I would enjoy it so much, frankly. I never had a desire to be a mother. It just wasn’t something important to me. I’ve always been career-driven; I felt like [my work] was my purpose. But having a child has changed my life. It’s brought me incredible fulfillment, a new perspective and purpose. I love it.”
I thoroughly enjoyed this response from her, even more so because she didn’t just stumble upon motherhood – she tried for it. In that one response, I connected.
Lisa Ling articulated something I have personally experienced, the biggest surprise about motherhood is that I love being a mom – being V’s mom. To give you some context, when revealing to a senior associate at my agency that I was pregnant he literally asked, based on how I was sharing the news with him, “Oh, I’m sorry, was this not planned?!” I quickly exclaimed “I’m crazy planner, of course this was planned! I just don’t know how I feel about the whole thing yet.” True story. Because although I’m insane with planning, researching and organizing I’m not awesome with change and this was a BIG ONE!
If there’s one thing I can say it’s that some changes are amazing, and motherhood – for me – was one of them.
I was really scared about becoming a mom. Like real scared. I literally told my husband, IV, that he better be ready to take care of this baby on his own because I may check-out of the whole thing.
The truth is children terrified me. I was convinced that I’d be one of those people that did not love or bond with their child. I definitely wanted a family but was more of the mindset to skip infancy and adolescence and go straight to the well-adjusted adult child part.
This may explain why I really enjoyed this quick article by Jenny Mollen for Cosmopolitan “The Moment I Fell in Love With My Son”. (You may know her husband, Jason Biggs, of American Pie fame among other projects like Orange is the New Black/OITNB). She directly addressed my thoughts and fears. Babies? Yeah, not super into them. Second Thoughts? For sure! I’m almost to the ‘finish line’ but am I really ready for this? Um I’m thinking no.
With this line she says it all…
“I wasn’t ready for kids. I was just ready for him.”
Now that Dan V is in my life, I think back on how much energy I wasted being anxious and worried. I may not have been ready for kids, but I was definitely ready for him.