5 Years LaterPosted: January 13, 2012
Five years ago, I had no idea what it really meant to be a mom. I thought I did. I thought I had it all planned out: graduate from college, get married, have two little girls. End of story.
Slowly but surely the truth began to unfold. All those wonderful things left unsaid by other mothers were brought to the forefront. The joys of pregnancy. The beauty of delivery. The joys and beauty of breastfeeding. Not so much.
Instead, three and a half hours of pushing. A BOY. Painful breastfeeding. Sleep deprivation that dropped me to my knees and rocked me to my core. Crying. Screaming. The baby cried too. The reality of mommyhood was not matching the fantasy I had built up in my head while pregnant.
But how could it. In one fail swoop, life as I knew it came to a screeching halt. And overnight, a new life began. One where my heart suddenly existed outside of my body. One where I could no longer run from challenges, or avoid them all together. One where another being depended on me to be the absolute best I could be, even if I didn’t know who that was. Yet.
I finally had a piece to the puzzle of my life I never knew I needed. There were days I questioned the purpose. Wondered why. It was a joy and love that built slowly. And wavered at times.
When “most” kids were sleeping through the night, mine was not. When “most” kids sat through circle times at the various classes we took, mine was not. When “most” kids were talking, mine was not. When “most” kids were separating from their parents and enjoying preschool, mine was not. However, the hardest by far was hearing that my child was not progressing as he should. Was not making friends as he should. Was not interacting with his peers as he should. Fear. Sadness. My heart broke upon hearing the words uttered by his teacher.
I had never anticipated this. Who does.
Many tests and observations later, a plan was put into action. I was determined to do all I could to help “fix” this even though I hadn’t a clue as to where to begin. Big, scary words and acronyms were thrown at us: speech delay, spectrum, ADD, SPD, pragmatic language delay…
And here I sit, one year later, only days from Ty’s fifth birthday. Looking back at the last five years. At where we started. And where we are NOW.
I am humbled and honored that Ty chose us. His sleepless nights taught ME to endure. Persevere. Nap. His boundless energy taught ME to see the absolute joy in motion. Challenged ME to keep up and keep busy. His speech delay taught ME to see his unique learning style. To learn that each child truly is different and will “do” at his or her own time. His separation anxiety taught ME to let go, trust others, and to foster his independence. His social challenges taught ME to build up his confidence. Allow him to approach situations his way, on his time, when he’s ready.
My love for Ty, now, almost five years later, is greater than I could have ever imagined. There are days when he drives me absolutely crazy, but more than anything this amazing, special little boy has changed my life in ways I could have never imagined. He has taught me about being a better a person. He has taught me about the person I wish to be. And he inspires and motivates me to be that person everyday.
Five years later, mommyhood is not what I had imagined it to be.
There is no way I could have understood until I did.