Sometimes I think of the woman I was when I held my first son in my arms. I didn’t know what to do. I was scared, terrified actually…and yet so full of love for this little being I just met. And I wish that I knew then what I know now. I wish I was the woman then, that I am today.
But then I think of the nights I spent nursing a fever or calming a frightened child after a nightmare. I think of the thousands of diaper changes and feedings. And as they grew, the thousands of birthday parties and playdates so they could make friends.
I think of nights spent in the hospital with my son while chemotherapy dripped into his bloodstream, unable to tear myself away from his side and yet worrying about how my other kids were faring at home without me. And the many other nights in the emergency room comforting scared little children who were facing stitches or xrays.
I think of the countless hours I spent researching anxiety when my daughter was diagnosed with phobias and OCD, because she was terrified she too would get cancer one day. And the endless visits to doctors to find just the right one to help her.
I think of the books I’ve read along with my kids so I could help them write their papers and study for their tests. Trying time and again to finally figure out how to write a bibliography.
And I think of the travel involved in visiting college campuses, supporting them as they studied for SAT’s and helping them write the best essay they could. And throughout it all, doing my best to give advice on girlfriends, peer pressure, friendships and life.
And I realize that it’s actually because of them that I am the woman I am today.