Motherhood Right Now
Motherhood is wanting to read books and cuddle my almost four year old forever. To press his little face against mine and kiss him and listen to his wild imagination. It is pride at a new word, a new friend made, a new song sung. It is wanting him to grow no bigger so that I can always hold his weight in my arms and feel his body fit against mine. Motherhood is also losing my patience when he asks for one more song, one more story, sixty-nine more minutes of cuddling before shutting his eyes and giving me a respite from the demands and questions that his quick little mind supplies endlessly. It is impatience and frustration at shoes not put on, meals left untouched, being told “no one loves you and that’s the truth.”
Marriage is viscerally remembering how it felt to fall in love, at the age of 18, with such force, and how it felt when we held hands for the first time and my heart was so loud I was sure everyone was looking at me. It is looking at this man who has been my partner for 15 years with our child and thinking that I have it- this family and joy I have always wanted and that it is all I dreamed off- eating corn in the backyard while the sun sinks love and pink. A minute later marriage is a question. Why do we fight this same fight over and over. Why do we try and do all of this together? Why does it feel so hard?
Life right now is joy. It is sprinklers making rainbows in the yard while my son runs through the water marveling at it all. It is exchanging looks with my husband about how imaginative and hilarious this child of ours is. It is the juice from fresh peaches dribbling down our chins while Rufus asks me “mama, do you know I love you even when you are far away?”
Life right now is fear. The fear that I am not doing any of it right. The terror that I could lose all of this in a moment. A crane crashing down, a gun in the wrong hands. It is the terror of knowing the waters are rising, the animals disappearing, the apathy growing.
Life is about acceptance. I accept us. I rejoice in us.
*Photos by the darling and amazing Nataliya Khan.