Laura brings us this month’s post.
Mother’s Day freaked me out a little this year.
Not because I forgot to call my mom or do something nice for her. No, it was because a lot of people patted my increasingly prominent belly and wished me a happy Mother’s Day.
See, I haven’t quite wrapped my mind all the way around that concept yet. Yes, I’m really happy to be pregnant. I can’t wait to meet the baby this fall. I’m a little nervous about the prospect of actually taking care of “Bun,” as we call it until we have an appropriate pronoun to use, but I feel loved and supported enough by my husband and everyone else around me that I’m not overly concerned.
But being someone’s actual mother? I’m not sure I signed up for that part of the deal.
Everyone has a mother. Everyone’s mother has an enormous influence on their lives, whether positive or negative. My mother and mother-in-law and various grandmothers are all wise and patient and gentle and loving and generally wonderful, strong women.
I don’t feel even remotely capable of measuring up to that standard.
I can—and I’m sure I will, because what other choice to I really have?—take Abby’s good advice and fake it ‘til I make it as a mother. But the stakes seem too high for that in this case. How do I even know whether I’m faking it properly? How does one ever know that they’re doing a good or poor job as a parent until their offspring turns out either great or lousy? Even then—I’m sure as my child’s mother (eep) I won’t necessarily have a reliable opinion about where on the wonderfulness scale my kid lands.
What I think I have to keep reminding myself is that nothing in life comes with a manual. Nothing important, anyway. Blenders come with manuals.
But I’ve faked it—and so far made it!—as a homeowner. A wife. A copywriter. And before that, so many other things that I don’t even remember anymore because they worked and I came out just fine on the other side. My home is still standing and my marriage is still strong. I haven’t been fired yet. Clearly I’ve made it before.
Yes, I think the stakes in this case are higher than they’ve ever been before. And I’m still really freaked out by the whole concept of being someone’s actual mother. To be honest, I doubt that feeling will ever go away, because (I have to take a deep breath before I even type this): I’m going to be a mother for the whole rest of the my life.
But there’s no going back at this point. I have a half-done baby getting ready to come out and be my kid, whether either of us likes it or not. So I think the best I can do is fake it—and pray like crazy that I’ll raise a child who loves Jesus. Works hard. Learns things. Cares for others. I’ll pray that I can be a good example for Bun. That Bun will stay healthy and safe always.
And if I can dare to ask for one more thing in this whole litany of prayers for my child . . . that Bun will love his or her mother as much as I already love Bun.
Laura (Bardolph) Hubers (’10) is wife to Matt, mother to Samuel, and copywriter at Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. She counts the day the Chicago Cubs won the 2016 World Series as one of the happiest of her life.
Matt Hubers (’12) lives with his wife, Laura, and young son, Samuel. He likes to spend his time playing board games, coaching high school forensics, and frolicking with alpacas. His dream is to write picture books.