Written by: Kate
These last few weeks of pregnancy have been sweet with anticipation, fulfilling in preparation, and lightly touched with anxious expectations. I've filled my days with washing baby clothes and cloth diapers, feeling for baby wiggles and swishes underneath my skin, and emailing queries for my children's book.
That last one has been an unexpected surprise; I wrote my book over the past few years, worked with a literary consultant turned friend to fine-tune its content, passed it around a gaggle of beta readers, and ran it through a professional edit. A few weeks ago I realized it was actually done; well, at least as done as it can be at this stage.
And so each day I send a query and check my inbox for responses. Each day I turn mental circles analyzing each contraction, twinge of discomfort, and baby movement for impending labor. You would think with this being my third I would have a supernatural connection to the babe in my womb. But I feel just as clueless as I did as a first-time mom.
There is an odd comfort in knowing that I am in the company of strong women worldwide awaiting the arrival of their little ones. And although I acutely remember the sensations and (ahem) discomfort of birthing, I do not know how this particular labor will go. I wait for the marathon to begin, knowing I will use all of my reserves to complete the course, without knowing the exact route or finish line.
The book is no different. I've shaped and created it, sent it out into the world, and wait with expectation for a favorable connection with the right agent. But like this baby, the book's outcome is also out of my hands.
I imagined, when I became a mother for the first time, that my entrance into parenthood would be distinctly marked with a before and after. But as I enter my 7th year of walking alongside my little ones, I realize that what felt like a wild leap into motherhood has been a slow submerging. Day by day, I learn a little bit more about myself as a mother and about my children and swim deeper into this role and life.
And with all of this--the awaiting of labor and meeting my baby, hoping for a positive response to my queries, and actively creating a happy home environment for my kids--I am learning the art of letting go, of leaning into the unknown, and asking for forgiveness and grace when I inevitably make mistakes.
So if you find yourself wading into the unknown, have courage and trust that you're not alone on your journey, whatever it may be.