"Everything has changed, yet I am more me than I have ever been." - Iain Thomas
When I read this quote, I felt like it summed up my experience with motherhood. Nothing is the same; everything has changed. Everything about me has changed, yet somehow I feel more like person I am supposed to be. It's the oddest thing.
I often say that I feel like my daughter is the piece of me that I didn't even know was missing. Knowing her and loving her is sometimes the only thing in my life that feels right. She fits into this hole in my heart that I didn't know was there. I was searching for her all along, but I just didn't realize it.
The love, the love is intense. It's all consuming. People talk about it, how much you'll love your child. They're right, but the word "love" just doesn't seem to do justice to the feelings. It's like this feeling that you have for your child is so expansive, so deep, so wide that there is nothing she could ever do to step outside of it. My love for her will follow her into her darkest places.
It's also scary; to love someone this much is terrifying. It's like a piece of your heart that lives outside your body. You do your best to protect it, but you know deep down you won't be able to shield it from every wound. She will get her heart broken, and I won't be able to stop it. Someone or something (likely several someones and somethings) will hurt her, and in turn, hurt me. We will share every bruise and scar, she and I. It's an odd thing, knowing it will happen, knowing you can't really prepare for it, but loving so deeply anyway.
So while absolutely everything about me has changed since becoming her mother, I wouldn't dare go back. This person, my daughter's mother, this is who I was meant to be.