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Motherhood Has Changed Me

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Motherhood has changed me.
I used to pride myself on my inability to sit still;
I identified with the need to move, think, and do— constantly.

And I continued to do so after my first born arrived...
until I kind of crumbled and just couldn’t anymore.

That was when my mom encouraged me to shift my perspective…
to recognize that “just” being present, just being there
with my children was all I needed to be doing sometimes—

even if that meant just sitting with them and doing very little
other than giving them my attention.

And I know she’s right
because when I look back on my childhood,
I don’t necessarily remember the times she was busy doing things for us, but
I definitely remember the times she was doing almost nothing WITH us.

I remember when she was present,
precisely because I remember how she made me feel—

loved.

I remember how I felt when she’d simply braid my hair.
I remember how I felt when she’d stay with me in her room all day when I was sick.
I remember how I felt when she’d watch me dance the same 16 counts over and over in our kitchen.
I remember how I felt when she’d ask me how I was feeling in that specific tone that let me know she was ready to listen to me pour it all out.

My mother made me feel loved during those moments when she was actually
“doing” very little.

It was in her moments of presence that
my inner child was growing confidently secure, and

my swirling spirit was anchored by the most steadfast love I ever knew—hers.

And so, as I look back I see that there within my childhood memories lies a beautifully painted story of the making of a mother—my mother—

and that gives me faith that my children, too, will one day look back and see that it was in my moments of presence that their most meaningful childhood memories took root and began to bloom…

and all the while they’ll be painting a story
of the making of a mother—
their mother.
Me.

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