I am not the same person I was seven years ago.
It isn’t that I have changed exactly, it is just that weight of motherhood resting on my very core, pushed most of me to the edges, to the extremes.
I am a polarized version of what I once was.
Life seems somehow heavier, sadder, worse. Simultaneously I feel lighter, happier, like the world is full of only beautiful things.
I laugh more than I ever did before but I cry more too. For my babies, for yours, for the babies without a mamma to cry for them.
I did not know I had a temper before they arrived, I couldn’t imagine being capable of child abuse before and now…I can. At the same time, it is even more unfathomable than ever. I am much more gentle than I thought I was, less calloused, less caustic.
I thought I was a patient person before they helped me to find the end of it. And now? They’ve drilled me and my patience runs to wells and depths I wouldn’t have imagined I needed.
I’ve never felt like I’ve failed at anything like I’ve failed these children. Also? I’ve never been so proud of anything I’ve done in my whole life.
Things seemed more complex before my little people arrived. Now loving God and man seems like PLENTY.
My tongue seemed to sharpen equally but paradoxically to the softness of their skin. My heart seemed to grow to accommodate the whole of them.
And then the sweetest part…there in the middle where they weigh on me the heaviest, where I feel like I am near worn through to nothing? That place where things get thin? I’ve seen Jesus there more than I thought would be possible this side of heaven.
And that has been the greatest gift.
yes.yes.yes. I thought i knew myself before, then they came along and took me to all new places within myself. so lovely, as always!
Oh, Melissa. This is incredible. Thank you for these words that capture the peace and conflict and all the paradoxes living in one body and heart. This love, this journey of us mamas. I so hear you.
A thousand amens. What a beautiful dance there is in motherhood between pain and joy and between all those other places we live in the thin tension, the balancing places. You write it with tender beauty friend. I know these place of which you speak. I am grateful you put it onto the page with your pen.
Beautiful. Yes, exactly what I feel. And here’s the interesting thing – my youngest is 26, my oldest almost 30 – and I still feel just like you. My mom *heart* is the same – stretching more than ever before to the ends of my ability to be challenged, and yet fuller than ever with the joy of having adult sons who are my friends.
Thank you for putting words to the feelings that are so deep in my heart.
And yes, I have learned to know and understand the heart of a Heavenly Father more than I ever thought possible – just by being a mother.
I enjoy reading your words so much. Thank you for sharing them!