Bachman Vitaro Rentler-073Photo courtesy of Twinkle Photo

I thought I’d left it behind. The daily anxiety that used to plague me. That kept me from doing the things I needed and wanted to do. Somehow, when I became am mom, I decided I wasn’t going to plan for the worst. Most of the time I don’t allow myself to fear what outside forces might to do my children. I don’t think about child abductions or playground accidents and I try not to obsess over my kid’s health. But what I didn’t see coming was the fear of what I could do to them. All of a sudden, with a third on the way and the other two at 3 and 6 I wonder what they’ll remember of these years and if any of it will be good.

Days spent trying not to yell and throw things, even if they are. Nights spent worrying that they don’t realize they are loved, or that they see love as a license to do whatever they please, thus leading to a life of selfish choices. (It’s at those moments that I try to remind myself that they are ONLY 3 and 6, ages which I’ve determined are the epitome of self-focus and egocentrism, at least for my kids).

I worry that I’ll resent them, and worse, that they’ll know it. That I will miss the good things among the bad.  I fear that in my flawed humanness that somehow I’ll fail at trying to turn their gazes to the perfect one who makes all things new (including me, painful as it is).

I don’t allow myself to fear what the world can do to them, though I’m sure there is much to be had there if I let it in. But it’s hard to keep away my own doubts about myself as a mom; to believe that I really can do this, that they really were meant for me. When this next one arrives, it will be so simple. He will need me and I will be there. But with these older ones it’s much more complicated. They need me, but they push me away. They cling to me and I want to run. My love for them consumes me even as my anger smolders and I question every life choice that has brought me to this point.

If only there was a way to return to those early days of simple needs, where love really was all the answer we needed.

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