I’ve always considered myself a strong person. I’ve been proud of how much I have tolerated and still managed to come out on top. (Well, not necessarily on top – but I’ve been able to keep my head relatively above water and make the most of any situation.) Part of the reason I never wanted to be a mother before I conceived Tori was that I knew I’d be responsible for another little human being and I was sure that would push me past my limit.
When Josh and I conceived Tori, I was petrified. Instantly. Life as I knew it was over. It was time to shed my old skin and re-emerge as someone completely different – as a mom. Sure, I had almost 10 months to prepare, but 10 months is nothing after you’ve been concerned with sustaining only yourself for 27 years before that.
I read everything I had time to read about motherhood. I took a childbirth class. I took three breastfeeding classes. Did I feel more prepared? Nope. I felt more terrified. I had days when I wondered, “How will I do this?” Some days I thought, “What was I thinking?” On others I simply felt amazed at what was going on within my body. Pregnancy is truly a miraculous experience. Over time I became more and more nervous about labor and delivery.
When the morning of August 2nd came and my water broke, I busied myself with laundry while Josh got his last couple hours of sleep as a non-parent. I spoke nervously to my tummy. “Do I get to meet you today, little one?” I asked as I stood in front of the washing machine and rubbed my bump tentatively. Tori didn’t answer me but my heart fluttered. As it turns out, I didn’t get to meet her that day but I did the next – August 3rd at 12:07 a.m., after 17 hours and 37 minutes of easy labor. Then life truly changed.
Suddenly I was no longer April – daughter, sister, college graduate, employee, wife. Suddenly I became a circus act – a juggler. I became all the things listed above, plus mom.
Now instead of going to work, paying bills, coming home, spending time with the husband, and going to bed – I’m getting up, taking care of Tori, being “moo-mie” (making milk), going to work, paying bills, making doctors’ appointments, being moo-mie again, running errands, paying bills, coming home from work, and then again being moo-mie, taking care of Tori, orchestrating baths and showers, grabbing a quick bite to eat, and then settling to bed with my favorite snuggle-bug.
I sure am busy . . . but life is wonderful.