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If I had known what motherhood was like...I would have chosen it, anyway

If I had known what sleep deprivation really felt like before I had kids…


If I had known the full measure of bodily fluids I’d have to clean up throughout my children’s childhoods…

If I had known how much the sound of “Mama? Mama? Mama?” could grate on my last nerve after hearing it every day for a decade…

If I had known that sometimes I’d take an extra long time on the toilet, just to have a few minutes to myself…

If I had known that those few stolen toilet moments would almost always be interrupted by tiny fists knocking on the door anyway…

If I had known how often I would have to repeat the same directions and corrections over and over and over and over…

If I had known that every “expert” remedy for whining, crying, moping, disobedience, disrespect and laziness would be completely ineffectual half the time…

If I had known that loving your children doesn’t mean liking them all the time…

If I had known that I would sometimes cry in the shower because there was no other place to vent alone…

If I had known that I’d be so “touched out” by the end of some days that the thought of getting busy with the hubby would repulse me…

If I had known that I would never be able to truly, fully concentrate on anything ever again…

If I had known that it doesn’t get easier as they get older, just hard in different ways…

If I had known I would feel terrified almost every day that I am failing at motherhood in some way…

If I had known how truly unrelenting parenting was going to be…

I would have had my children anyway.


Because if I hadn’t…

I wouldn’t know how miraculous it feels to have a human being grow from a tiny speck to an entire person inside my own body.

I wouldn’t know that the smell of a newborn’s head is all the evidence I need that there’s a heaven.

I wouldn’t know the magic of having a baby fall asleep in my arms and never wanting to put them down.

I wouldn’t know the unmatchable thrill of watching a child walk, use the potty, ride a bike, or read a whole book for the first time.

I wouldn’t know how the sound of my child’s laughter could lighten even the heaviest of days.

I wouldn’t know how an innocent, wide-eyed stare could melt me right into the floor.

I wouldn’t know how awesome it is to witness the daily, gradual unfolding of a person I helped bring into the world.

I wouldn’t know the pride of seeing my children navigate difficult situations using the tools and qualities I’ve helped instill in them.

I wouldn’t know how much pure, unbridled joy there could be in seeing my child triumph.

I wouldn’t know how much unexpected, humbling grace there could be in the constant struggle of trying to be a better parent.

I wouldn’t know how the act of parenting my own kids could help heal my own childhood hurts.

I wouldn’t know how losing myself in motherhood would result in finding a deeper, stronger, more real version of myself.

I wouldn’t know the warm, sweet fullness of being loved as only a mother can be loved.

I wouldn’t know the raw, fierce power of loving as only a mother can love.

And I wouldn’t know that the pain and pitfalls of the path are ultimately outweighed by beauty, joy and wonder of the journey.

If I had known what motherhood really was like, I’d have had my children all over again.

(I’d just have slept more when I had the chance.?)


This article was originally published on Motherhood and More.


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