Years ago when I was so unsure about having children, I didn’t know how I’d ever come to a decision one way or the other. In the end it was a leap of faith more than anything resembling certainty; a terrified here-goes-nothing plunge off the high dive.

What would it have been like, knowing what I know now?

I’d have understood how my happiness and peace of mind would become dependent on the happiness and peace of mind of people whose emotions and comprehension were in a constant state of flux. How my sense of self would often feel lost and buried under the rubble of motherhood, how what I did each day would go unseen and unappreciated.

I’d have known that confidence and validation was never going to be part of this gig for me: each year would be a blundering foray into the unknown, each day would bring reasons to doubt myself and useless wishes for outside assurances and internal conviction.

I’d have seen how the slippery nature of time would at first stretch the hours into achingly dull periods that felt as though they would never end, then send the earth spinning at such a dizzying pace the very best views would be there and gone, there and gone. How it would become obvious that there is no real difference between letting go and losing your grip. Good times, bad times, nothing stays the same.

I would have caught a glimpse of the indescribable magic behind all these things and more. The way motherhood is both small and expansive, a rut and a telescope. How it has torn me down and built me up and left me with a heart brimming over with not one overriding emotion but every complicated point in the spectrum.

Is it worth it? I might have asked, once upon a time.

Only if what you want is everything, I’d say now.

A post shared by Linda Sharps (@sundry) on

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Pat
Pat
4 years ago

You are such an incredible writer. It’s so true…it’s wonderful and awful and harder than anything you’ll ever do. And your heart gets broken and other times it is more full than you could ever imagine. Thank you

Kelly
Kelly
4 years ago

Absolutely. One of the things I thought about most before having a kid was that it would absolutely take someone else’s welfare to the most important thing in my life and permanently make my priorities crystal clear. It did, but it’s still not always clear for any particular decision which will be the best option to serve that top priority.

Trish
Trish
4 years ago

So stunningly written and spot on, once again. Your writing is so warm and lovely. Happy Mother’s Day!

anne nahm
4 years ago

no fair making me tear up before coffee!

Annie
Annie
4 years ago

gorgeous writing

Alison
Alison
4 years ago

Yes. And so beautifully written.

Michelle
Michelle
4 years ago

Spot on and beautifully written. Happy Mothers Day.

Jen T
Jen T
4 years ago

You always have an amazing way of describing the indescribable. Motherhood is much harder and more frustrating and all consuming than I ever could have imagined, and it’s also the best thing that’s ever happened to me.

camille
camille
4 years ago

Yes. All of it.

solange
solange
4 years ago

“How it would become obvious that there is no real difference between letting go and losing your grip.”

This floored me. So true for motherhood and all of life. Thank you for this.

Em
Em
4 years ago

So well said. Thank you for writing it.

I experienced one of those feelings the other day – staring at my almost 6-year-old. Wasn’t she just a baby? Whoosh.