Now that I have a child, I feel sorry for everything I put my mother through.
She always said that someday I would understand. Well, mom, this is someday.
I now have a spirited 3 ½ year old and often wonder how my mother ever got through the days while raising the three of us kids.
The worry I carry every single day for the wellbeing of my son is overwhelming at times. The worries range from:
Did he get enough sleep?
Did he brush his teeth?
Did he take his multi-vitamins?
Did he get enough for breakfast?
Did he go outside enough today?
Did he learn anything today?
Did he feel happy and loved?
Taking care of someone else's life is a lot of work. I am lucky as a mom if I get to sleep through the night without nightmares or bathroom breaks, to remember to eat at some point during the day and to actually wear clothes that match. Last week, I went to a boardroom meeting with navy nylons and a black dress.
I now understand the sacrifices that were made to my benefit. I make the same sacrifices every single day. I recognize the selflessness that went into raising me as I now struggle to live that path every single day to make sure my son is well taken care of. I had the best role model to emulate.
I remember telling my mom I hated her when I was a teenager. I am sure it hurt her more then she let on, because if my son tells me that one day, I would be devastated. I will probably call her and tell her all about it. Because she will understand.
I am sure my mother didn't really want to spend all of her money on figure skating lessons, swimming lessons, piano lessons and my university education, but I sure do appreciate it now and hope to be able to provide the same opportunities to my son.
I am the first one to admit I was not an easy child to raise. I was rebellious, opinionated, strong-willed and made my own path -- all the traits I now see in my son and admire. I look at him and laugh to myself that I really did get to experience what my mother had to go through in raising me. This really is my someday. My mother always let me be me, something that I value and remember while raising mini me.
Every milestone I met, she was so very proud and encouraging. I use to think it was overbearing until I gave birth to my son and would call her every single time he did something new because I too was so proud. I finally had something in common with her. I was a mother.
Luckily for me, I always knew that she thought I was worth it. It's worth the years with no recognition because watching me grow was payment enough.
I can't go back in time, but what I can do is let her know I finally understand how she felt all those years. I think that is more acknowledgment then she would expect because being a parent is such a thankless and selfless job. But now I see it's worth every single second.