Motherhood isn't something I can easily explain but it's a secret language all other mothers will understand. Physically, it is a bit like running a marathon. Even as challenging as it may be, I have never felt so much reward. You hit walls you don't think you can surmount only to be blown away by your own strength and resolve time and time again. Unlike a marathon you aren't doing this for you. For most of us, having kids is the first moment when your universe pivots from circling around you to someone else. I shifted much of my energy and my hopes from myself to these two small humans that are my new sun. It's beautiful and freeing and let's you experience love in new way.
Shifting the orbit of my life was not easy. My husband and I were used to working hard, sleeping nightly, traveling, and going on fun dates. We thought were very busy. We had no idea. You know that moment when you graduate from college and you've been working for a while and you realize there will be no summer break? When I first had kids it felt like an extreme version of that. Grasping desperately for sleep, having a baby rely on me (and my body) for every meal, never having a moment for myself. I was not one of those people who immediately connected with my new purpose as a mother. The initial shift felt like war for me. From having dreams that I was drowning to irrational fights with my husband, I felt like a different person and couldn't help but feel some sense of resentment towards this new being for stealing me... and my life.
Around four months the fog began to clear and my feelings began to change, it is probably no coincidence that this is also when I began getting more sleep and when my son began to smile. It was probably just gas but it suddenly transformed this bundle of responsibility into a real human right before my eyes. This experience has built upon itself as he's grown and as the person trapped inside that helpless baby’s body emerges and begins to interact with me and the world.
Every time I think I start to understand my role as a mother it changes again. He is no longer a baby but a young person with a perspective and feelings and his own desires - even if at this point it's only to touch the trash truck when it rolls through our back alley. I feel my role change.
I feel myself transform into my mother as a mother myself. I instantly understand her so much more. I took and gave her everything by my very existence and yet she was her own person before me. She was a different person.
Motherhood has been a connector, not just between my mother and I but between myself and all mothers. Everyone's experience is woven different and yet it's made of the same fibers. We are comrades in this journey of light and dark.
My children are my Suns. I am still me but these small children have irreparably shifted who I am and how I see the world simply by existing.