Saturday, October 19, 2013


I walked into the small bar and was immediately greeted by my 2 beautiful girlfriends.  There was a live musician and 20 beers on tap.  We ordered our drinks, sat down at our round table and began to make small chat.  We were 10 minutes into the conversation when I informed them that I had signed up for a 5k.  And that's how it began.  "I just want to lose 10 pounds of baby weight," said one.  The other chimed in, "I have just five pounds to lose, but I want to tone-up."  "Same here, I said, five pounds and to tone-up!"  We shared and laughed about how much pregnancy and motherhood changed our bodies.  "My breasts and butt went south, and now I have rolls on my stomach."  "Me too, I really need to tone my stomach", I added.  We all concurred, pregnancy hadn't done our bodies any favors.  We then chuckled about how giddy we get by going to the grocery store alone, or how awesome it is when our husbands take charge of bedtime duties.  As I sat there and looked at my 2 beautiful friends, I realized something, that we were exactly the same, that motherhood had "made us the same".  We had different journeys to motherhood, IVF vs. natural conception, C-section vs. natural birth, big babies vs. tiny babies, but we had been transformed in the same way regardless of our journey.  Strip away all socioeconomic differences, religious convictions, political beliefs, education levels, homes, clothing, credit cards and fancy cars, and we are all the same.

Any mother, anywhere, anytime, without ever having met her, I already know her, and she already knows me.

I know that the day her baby was placed in her arms, an overwhelming sense of awe overcame her and that she couldn't take her eyes of her miracle.
I know that with the gift of motherhood she feels an incredible sense of responsibility for the health, happiness and well-being for that child and that she frequently questions if she is doing it right.
I know that she second-guesses herself all day long regarding discipline.  Was that too much?  Was that not enough?  Am I doing this right? 
I know that she frequently gives the food off her own plate to satisfy her child.  I know that it is a treat to sit down and finish a meal without getting up, as tending to her child is her job.
I know that she gets excited to go to the bathroom or shower alone, as her child is never out of her sight and a little bit of privacy makes her feel like a queen.
I know that she stands in Target and inspects diapers, wipes, baby food labels, body wash ingredients to ensure that she is providing nothing but the safest and the best for her child.
I know that she double-checks her child's car-seat for safety, ties his/her shoes, and repeats 100 times per day 'to be careful', as keeping her child safe and out of harm is her #1 concern.
I know that she has cried tears from frustration, maybe 10 nights of a teething baby + temper tantrums has broke her and she feels like she desperately needs a break.
I know that some days she feels like her identity was robbed.......she doesn't see her friends anymore, she wears yoga pants and snot everyday, and she doesn't have time to do the things that she used to enjoy.
I know that whether she's a stay-at-home mom or working full-time, she feels very pulled and questions her choice everyday.
I know that she has been grossed out countless times by the bodily "waste" produced by her child....vomit, snot, soiled diapers, yet she has cleaned the "waste" a million times and immediately turns around and hugs and loves that child regardless of anything "gross".
I know that she has hopes and aspirations for her child that may be unrealistic, and that she will be that child's cheerleader regardless of where life may take them and despite bad decisions.  She will just hope and pray that they land on their feet and are happy.
I know that she loved her child so immensely that deciding to have her 2nd child was more about giving her 1st child a sibling in life and less about her wanting 'more'.
I know that her soul feels incredible joy when the sound of her child's booming belly-laugh fills her home.
I know that her heart fluttered from pure happiness for every milestone that was met, every homerun hit, and A+ received, and that nothing can top how proud she feels during those moments.
I know that she has a deep appreciation for her own mother 25 years later, and turns to her for advice, guidance and for a shoulder to cry on.  I know that she hopes that she can make as much of an impact on her children and be as amazing as her mother was.
I know that she feels lonely at times, whether it's due to her husband working long hours, or due to a restricted and regimented schedule for her children, her days alone are hard.
I know that she is hit with the deepest sorrow that sends chills down her spine upon hearing of a family losing a child, as this is her greatest fear and it saddens her that another mother's "greatest fear" has been realized.
I know that she can't sleep if her child is sick, and that she'll stay up all night checking temperatures and holding her child's tiny fingers until she is positive her child will be okay.
I know that as she toils over the details of her child's birthday party; the appetizers, the goodie bags, the venue, that a part of her heart is aching.  As 1 more year has passed, her child is slowly inching away from her.  She knows that her child will be independent and no longer "need" her one day, and as she celebrates, her heart cannot ignore that sense of inching away slowly.
I know that no matter what kind of day she had, hearing her child say "I love you mommy!," made it all better.  It felt like the most important boss she ever had just reassured her that she is doing a great job!
I know that she worries all day long.  Is she feeding her child healthfully enough?  Is she teaching them enough?  Did they watch too much television?  Do they need a bath, it has been 2 days since their last bath?
I know that when her child cries with a broken heart, that this is the most crushing blow to her heart, and that she wants nothing more than to make her child's heart whole again and make this world a loving place.
I know that she worries about her child fitting in at school, in society?  Will they be well-liked?
I know that when her child hugs her, that she's perplexed how 2 of the tiniest arms that were ever wrapped around her are able to feel like the biggest, warmest and most comfortable hug that she ever received.
I know that she would without hesitation give her life for her child.
 Mother and Child 300x379 Mother and Child  photo

I know all of these things about her and she knows them of me.  We are the same in our hopes, worries, fears and joys that we have experienced as mothers.  We are moms, and motherhood has not only transformed our bodies, but our minds and souls as well.  We may work tirelessly to regress to our pre-child bodies, to tone-up, to lose those 5 pounds.  However, it is our hearts and souls that have been permanently transformed, and I know that not one of us would choose to go back, to be our pre-child selves.  I know that each of us are so incredibly grateful to have become the individual that motherhood turned us into.  Like a caterpillar to a beautiful butterfly, we have been permanently transformed and will never look back.

For every mama out there, Kanye had the best song for you:

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