I was in the hospital, hours after giving birth to our first child, Mary Grace. A stream of visitors had kept us busy most of the day, and by the time Brandon, our best man, arrived with his daughters, Mary Grace was done. She started to cry in his arms.
I panicked when he said, "She wants her mama." I thought, "This is the moment when I'm revealed as a fraud - this is when they're going to realize that I can't do this - that I don't have what she needs. Don't hand her back to me! I don't know what she wants! She's going to keep crying forever because I don't know what to do!"
He placed her gently in my arms and she stopped crying. And for the first time since I'd become pregnant, through the fog of perinatal anxiety I had the first flicker of an idea that I might be able to do this.
I've been doing this for over ten years now, which is hard to believe. My kids are happy. Their needs are met. They're thriving. I wish I could go back and tell myself, "It's going to be ok."
Happy Mother's Day!