Other women don’t tell you that you will apologize constantly and for everything.

Especially when you spend the day pushing around an empty stroller, you will constantly apologize that it's empty. You will tell people not to hold doors open or help in any way because you don't deserve such things given that your child is not with you. You will feel obliged to repeat that the stroller [...]

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Other women don’t tell you first days also mean last.

The first time your son inhales a gulp of air, the first time he takes your breast and sucks hard, the first time he squeezes his tiny palm around some part of you and leaves depressions of his razor-nails inside your flesh, will also mean the last time your body holds him completely, in water [...]

Other women don’t tell you how you’ll forget the fireflies

because you are never out past sunset anymore. Because summer nights are mostly spent on the couch, in the air conditioning, zoned out to the latest Netflix show helping you recover from the day. You recall how your sister-in-law told you, “Days are long, but the years fly,” and as your son gets older, the [...]

Other women don’t tell you family-size diaper boxes will transform

into boats sailing the hardwood-floor ocean; rocket ships flying your son through rainbows up to the stars; time capsules holding the tiny clothes his body has outgrown; and a casket for a small animal, the first living thing you and his father took care of together, the 11-year-old gray-tabby, Ele P. Hant, who started your [...]

Other women don’t tell you when you break down crying in front of your child—

this time, because he refused to poop in the potty and did it in his pull-up and you are sobbing while changing him—he will say, Stop crying, Mama, I’m right here. And you have never heard him say this, nor have you ever said those words to him in English. And his tenderness just makes [...]

Other women don’t tell you your child will catch the moon

and throw it to your next-door neighbor. Here, catch, he’ll say, and when your neighbor passes it back, your son will open his arms wide, I got it. Then, he will tell you how he wants to hug the sky. He will tell you he can swim up there, spread his arms wide in embrace [...]

Other women don’t tell you when you come back

exhausted from layovers and daylong conferences and being around strangers who don’t run to hugs, your son will be somewhat apathetic. He will smile and say Mama and kiss you when you ask for it. He will adore the plane you purchased for him at the airport gift shop, which makes “real” plane sounds that [...]

Other women don’t tell you when you choose to leave (and you will)

you won’t go very far. And you will see your son everywhere. When you go away for two nights in January, not for a conference or obligation or commitment, but wholly for yourself, to celebrate a friend’s birthday, those two days pass the way of his childhood, in a flash and eternity at once. Before [...]

Other women don’t tell you what you will learn when you ask your child about love

He will tell you he loves himself. When he first begins talking, he will press his palms into his chest and say his name as emphatically as he can, despite being unable to pronounce the soft middle “L” yet, or the final hard consonant “N.” Who do you love? You will ask him. And he [...]