Friday, March 5, 2010
The Four Truths of Motherhood
It's never good when my youngest daughter calls , and her opening line is, "Are you alone?" This is the point when I start pouring a glass of wine, or better yet a stiff drink. Then after I realize that the law is not involved (yet), she hasn't eloped (although that would relieve us of the stress and expense of a wedding), and nothing has happened that will require a hasty wedding, I can just settle down and prepare for some disaster that she doesn't want her father to know about. Like I can solve every calamity she creates.
I have tried to be honest with my girls as they grew up. Being a mother is not all it's cracked up to be. Oh, there are those "Hallmark" moments when you realize that it is all worth it, otherwise you would share the natural instinct with mothers in the wild to kill your young.
First, I impressed upon them that child birth hurts and that is just the beginning. My mother never gave me this advice. But come to think of it - I know why. My mother felt nothing, remembered nothing, and awoke 2 days later with a beautiful daughter that a nurse was caring for. I on the other, begged for all the drugs that had been developed, they would give me little, and what they did had no effect, it hurt like Hell, and five minutes after going through the most pain I have ever experienced they hand me this screaming baby, smile and say "Here she is!"
I tried in vain to convince my Ob/Gyn to give me Gas for my pain during child birth - after all they used it on my mother. I was born with two arms, two legs, with ten digits on each. I can walk, talk, and I graduated from college - it can't have too many side effects. But I digress.
Secondly, I told them that, unfortunately, they did not come with instructions, a guarantee, or a return policy. Once they were delivered, their Dad and I were on our own.
Thirdly, God sent them young for a reason. We got attached to them before they became a little "trying". By that time we had such an emotional investment, we were willing to do anything we could to help them (and us) survive to adult hood.
Fourth, the goal was for them to leave the nest and be successful.
Now how much of this they took seriously, I'll never know. I'll just wait until they have their first child. Then I'll just sit and watch. One thing is, they can't say I wasn't honest.