I used to think I didn’t want children. The world was too messed up, I was too messed up, family dynamics get too messed up. But I fell in love, and something about that love gave me hope that I could be a good mother.
Now I know. Becoming a mother changes your entire perspective of everything in life. There is no love like a mother’s love for her children. This overwhelming depth of feeling has given me a strength that I didn’t know I had. There is a primal fierceness in a mother’s love, and a superhuman strength that is also a mother’s greatest weakness.
I love my husband deeply, but, to be honest, I could go on without him. My boys, though… my life would be over.
I would do anything for my sons, anything in my power and beyond, to protect them, to give them the best life possible. Yes, I have no doubt that I would inflict mortal harm with my bare hands if it meant their safety. The other edge of that sword — they ARE my life now, and that vulnerability is terrifying. My life, my existence, my sanity, wholly depends on their well-being.
In a way, my need to protect them is purely self-serving. But I know I can move mountains for them, and I would not have found this strength until I felt the vulnerability of motherhood.
Any blog post that compares a day with kids to “a huge goat rodeo” is gem. My house has felt like a goat rodeo all summer.
Goat Rodeo days. These involve multiple kids, all mobile and past the napping years, seemingly bent on devising complex plots to undermine your attempts to even start any item on the day’s to-do list.
On days like this, I can’t wait to hit the Sweet Spot. When the kids are old enough to entertain themselves. When no one needs me to give them a snack or a juice, or a band-aid, or even a hug.
We’re not there yet. I yell a lot. I have butts to wipe. I hear mamamamamamamamama ALL. DAY. LONG. And sleeping through the night means I fell asleep putting the boys to bed and decided not to bother getting into my own bed.
But all these things that drive me bananas mean that they need me. And someday they won’t.
My boys are wild things. After they’ve danced on my last nerve, I still have supper waiting for themwhen they come back from the land where the wild things are. That’s what love is.
“In plain terms, a child is a complicated creature who can drive you crazy” Sendak told the AP in 2009. “There’s a cruelty to childhood, there’s an anger. And I did not want to reduce Max to the trite image of the good little boy that you find in too many books.”