A little more than 14 years ago, I remember sitting on my floor on the phone with my best friend and coming to terms with the fact that I was pregnant. This was not something that I had planned and I knew it was likely that the father did not have the emotional capacity to deal with the situation at the time. But, I also wasn’t a teenager. . .I was 31 years old, I had a good job and I even owned my condominium. And as I discussed my “predicament” on the phone with my bestie, all I kept thinking and saying was “I feel like I’ll regret it if I don’t have it.”
Choosing parenthood. . choosing motherhood. . choosing single motherhood is the most profound decision one bears on your life. It is choosing to give over your life for another. It is choosing to allow a piece of your soul to exist apart from you each day as it walks, breathes, learns, loves and hurts in the body of another. It is choosing to say “yes” to never being the same person you were before that child came along.
Fast forward 14 years and my son has just graduated from middle school. I couldn’t be more proud of who he is and who he is becoming. And surprisingly, I was given another choice in motherhood that I never imagined. . .no, I’m not pregnant again. . .I had been offered the opportunity to take a break from mothering on the day to day. . to take a “mom”bbatical for a year so that I could pursue my own dreams.
Against the backdrop of the recent family separations, I am reluctant to relish in the reality of getting a break from my daily parenting responsibilities. It is my mother’s heart that breaks at the sight of those children being traumatized at the hands of our own government. But as I reflected on the heavy lifting of the past 14 years, on the sacrifices that come with the role, I was overwhelmed by this blessing, this gift to pass the baton to his father, if only for a short while, and turn my lens back onto me. And as I contemplated my decision, once again, I had the feeling that I would regret it if I didn’t do it.
So, here I am, on my “mom”bbatical. The journey is just beginning and I decided to write this blog to share it with you. This blog is a celebration of all mothers. . .for the work that we do. . . and for the dreams we hold in our hearts
“Come to the edge, he said. They said, We are afraid. Come to the edge, he said. They came. He pushed them. . .and they flew.”—Guillaume Apollinaire