Before I was Your Mom

For Alex

Before I was your mom, it was all I wanted to be.
Every month when the pregnancy test was negative, my heart broke. 
Blood tests and doctors and specialists and odds against my dream.
Early morning drives to the fertility doctor
Blood levels measured and waiting for the perfect timing. 
Before I was your mom, I wanted you with all my heart. 

Before I was your mom, I was a young-ish kindergarten teacher. 
I found out I was going to be your mom in my classroom closet.
A voicemail from the doctor saying, "Congratulations, you are pregnant!"
while I stood among the crayons and construction paper. 
It was the best phone call I ever, ever received.
Before I was your mom, I wanted you with all my heart.

Before I was your mom, I never imagined how I would know you from the start,
How seeing your round little face after you were born was like seeing someone I've known my whole life.
How you would turn at the sound of my voice.
How calling myself your mom would be my favorite title ever.
When I became your mom, I loved you with all my heart. 

Before I was your mom, I didn't know how fast the years would fly.
How one day you would be sleeping on my shoulder 
and the next day you were too big for me to pick up.
How you would depend on my for everything until 
you could do so much on your own without me. 
How you would go from zooming around the living room
pretending you were an Octonaut
to zooming around the soccer field
scoring goals. 

Before I was your mom, I didn't know how hard the job would be.
How life's bends and curves would roll us and shape us
and the mistakes and the worries and the fears 
are wrapped up with the joy and the happiness and the love.
How being a mom to you means every feeling and emotion
and times I worry I've done it wrong. 
How being your mom is still the privilege of my life.
Before I was your mom, I didn't know it would be the most significant job I'll ever have. 

As you turn 8, I am holding tight to the bedtime stories and snuggles,
the checkers games you always win,
the soccer tournaments where you play with speed and passion.
The times you want me to sit in your chair as you fall asleep. 
I'll blink and you'll be a teenager
I'll blink and you'll be a man
I'll blink and you will be a dad yourself, maybe. 
Before I was your mom, I didn't know being a mom means letting go when you just want to hold on with all your might. 

Before I was your mom, I couldn't wait for you to be here.
Now I'm your mom and I couldn't be prouder of you. 
You are brave, resilient, smart, creative, kind and everything
I always dreamed of while I was anticipating 
being your mom. 





Comments

  1. These lines resonated with my heart.

    "How life's bends and curves would roll us and shape us
    and the mistakes and the worries and the fears
    are wrapped up with the joy and the happiness and the love."

    Thank you
    Kevin

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  2. It is a blink... but you will be ready. My oldest just started college and I am so happy for him that I find I am not that sad. I thought I would be miserable but somehow it just feels right. Nonetheless - play checkers, snuggle, read to him -- treasure every moment. Truly a lovely and beautifully crafted poem. I think you are doing it all right even when you are wrong. That is life!

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  3. Even as we pray that they grow healthy and happy, we mourn the quick passing of time. I'm glad you took a moment to write this birthday poem for your son; I hope it gets revisited for years to come.

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  4. Each precise detail perfectly shows all the aspects of being the mom. From before conception to leaping ahead to the future. Though it all seems to be "in a blink" I loved how you slowed it down and allowed me to also celebrate all that "being your mom" means to you and to ALL parents! Thanks for sharing this gorgeous poem today. A real gift!

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  5. My son just turned 37 yesterday (Oct. 1) and I still remember the day we came home very vividly. It was a spectacular autumn day and I could feel in my heart and bones a whole new chapter of my life beginning. I, too, have written poems to my son so I hung on every word you wrote today, reliving the early years. There's so much more to come, Kathy. The feelings just get deeper and stronger, believe it or not.

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  6. This left me in tears, Kathleen! Thank you for sharing. How special for Alex to cherish forever.

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  7. So beautiful! What a special gift for your son! I loved the anticipation your struggle at the beginning created!

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