It was a Tuesday. From the moment I got to work I felt exhausted. I could barely keep my eyes open. The only saving grace I had was that it was a movie day for the students, so not much was really required of me. It was an exhaustion without any cause that I could identify, but I remembered a friend mentioning that she had felt extremely tired without cause when she first discovered she was pregnant.
Could that be it? Was I pregnant?
That evening I took a pregnancy test. I saw the lines, but still I doubted. The next morning I took another pregnancy test. Again, the lines. I even took a third test, and still it was not until I got the confirmation from the doctor that I believed.
Things were unsteady in my marriage at the time. Getting pregnant was not a ploy to fix things, and I did worry that it would further divide us. I wasn’t naive enough to believe that my pregnancy would be wonderful news that would suddenly erase all our issues. I spent a full day in deliberation, running through every conceivable response and scenario before telling my husband because I needed to be mentally prepared.
I made my choice to accept the path of motherhood.
Some woman choose the path of motherhood, and actively pursue it. They have plans, timetables, and partners involved. I was one of those who had thought that someday it was likely I would be a mother, but that was an elusive someday without any sense of urgency. I have never felt my biological clock ticking.
When I chose to accept the path of motherhood I had many other things to accept as well. I had to accept that my body would undergo changes, and that my priorities would shift. I had to accept that I was taking on a life long commitment. Because things were so uncertain with my marriage I accepted that I might have to do it alone, though I hoped otherwise.
Fortunately, after much difficulty (and that is a severe understatement) my husband and I became stronger as a couple. We are still together, and will be celebrating our 12th anniversary this year. We have two children, a girl and a boy.
Like every parent I have moments when I just need a time out or a vacation. I get frustrated by the demands made on me, and sometimes I feel like I will break. Accepting motherhood doesn’t exempt me from those feelings, but it does allow them to pass. I am many things, but when push comes to shove I accept that being a mother will trump everything else.
What does accepting motherhood or fatherhood mean to you?
*Photo: Silence Before Storm by Enlighted Originality, obtained through Flickr.