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 [...]

Advertisements

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 [...]

Other women don’t tell you that when your child is sick (the languages of need and want)

A small part of you will enjoy it. Not his sore throat, because you would take all of his pain for yourself if you could. Not his restless turning in bed, his sweaty body tangled in a mess of blankets and pillows and sheets, and you can’t seem to find the right amount of layers [...]

Other women don’t tell you it only gets harder

Because who needs that kind of honesty when you are already struggling? So instead, they tell you it gets easier. Instead, they say, you’ll find a routine and get used to things, and of course, this too, is true. You do get used to things, because a human being can get used to anything. And [...]