When I was growing up, I had friends who really loved children. I mean we were in our teens, and they would love playing with kids from Children’s Church, or the neighbour’s baby, or do baby talk with the stranger’s child in the lift. They would squeal in delight and say “so cute!” or repeat some antics that the child did. Well, I was never like that. Never.
I don’t like kids. ok let me rephrase. I don’t like babies. I feel awkward around them, I’ve no idea what to do or say, I’m quite sure they don’t understand a single word I said–English or Baby Talk. Making funny faces at the baby or doing peekaboo doesn’t make sense to me. Don’t I sound like some baby-phobic man? hahaha!
Moving on to kids, I’m ok with them if they don’t whine and don’t throw tantrums. I can handle kids above 3 years. That’s when they can communicate and express themselves. Anything younger, no thank you.
Yes, that’s me. The very real mother of 3! I was like that, and even now, I’m not exactly a big fan of babies and children. So what made me decide to have kids? And not just one, but three?
We decided to have kids cos
it was the right thing to do it was time honestly, it was a societal norm. When I found out I was pregnant, I was still hesitant and apprehensive towards babies. Throughout the pregnancy, I became a little more excited to find out the whys and whats of the little baby inside. When Nicole was born, something changed. I was an official Mother. Like it or not, I am responsible to ensure she’s fed, cleaned, safe and growing well.
Obviously I couldn’t be anti-babies. And there wasn’t even a chance for me to be. Motherhood naturally makes you wanna give the best for the child. To Nicole, I was the best milk supplier ever, I had the best voice to sing funny songs, I was her favourite chameleon. I could have the most comforting face to assure her, or the weirdest face to tickle her with. I had the strongest arms. In fact, I thought I was so good at hushing her to sleep, I VOLUNTEERED to help my friends with their babies too!!!
I thank God Nicole was a very very easy baby. Naturally, I thought I am not bad at this MOTHER job… thus Nathan came along. And he was a very very easy baby too. And Nadine came alone. and yes, she was a very very easy baby, but with three kids, it wasn’t very very easy to survive financially! And we stopped.
So did Motherhood transform me to love kids, love babies and start chatting up strangers with kids? No, it didn’t. But that’s not the point of motherhood. How was I changed? Motherhood showed me that I am capable of loving when I don’t understand (think babies). It showed me that my heart can be stretched. I am able to love for one more, care for one more. (think of mum of more than 1). It showed me the tremendous responsibility I have to influence 3 little lives.
As much as I never thought I would be a mum, I don’t regret being one. Motherhood taught me confidence and at the same time, Motherhood brought me to my knees in humility. The countless times when I cried out not understanding and not knowing outweighs the times I stand tall like a super mother of the world. My reliance of God increased, and I have a glimpse of what a Father’s heart is like. Motherhood did open my eyes and my heart.
Yes, I love being a mother. And yes, I’m still not totally a baby lover.
This is part of a blog train – Embracing Motherhood hosted by Dominique’s Desk. Come and read all about how different mothers are embracing motherhood.
Next up is Pearlyn, who currently teaches part-time in a tertiary institution and part-time at home. Her blog Blessed Family records how God has blessed her in her roles despite her many imperfections. There are ups and downs in her journey as a mum to two, and she has learnt how to enjoy motherhood and not be too caught up in things that will not matter in the long run. Read on to find out how.