woman and baby

 I have to say it was a bit surreal celebrating Mother's Day this year as an honoree as well as an honorer. Episode 9 of It's Cancer, Baby gives us a peek into what my first Mother's Day was like from both perspectives.

First, I never really thought I'd one day be a mother. To an actual child. After 44 Mother's Days with no one other than my (admittedly beloved) cats and dogs paying me homage, I never imagined this holiday would one day have special meaning for me.

When Mother's Day came around last year, neither my husband nor I really took ownership of it even though I was pregnant at the time. It was too early in the pregnancy, and I had already had at least one miscarriage. We didn't want to jinx anything.

It felt a little strange celebrating this year, too, frankly. I was in the midst of chemo for aggressive Stage 3C cancer, and my prognosis was unknown.

I was still in that stage where none of it -- the baby, motherhood, my marriage, our life together -- really seemed real. It all seemed so potentially fleeting. And I didn't want to get all maudlin about anything (such as "this may be the only Mother's Day I'll ever celebrate"), so I sort of just kept such milestones at arms' length emotionally. 

I still do, actually.

I'm just trying to enjoy each day as it comes, and that includes treasuring every moment with this kick-ass little girl. As so many parents have told me, including my own mom, the time goes by so quickly. And it does. I look at photos of Maggs taken just a few months ago and she's already changed into a whole new kid. 

Before we had our child, we were told that having a baby makes one realize -- in an instant -- how much our own parents loved us. And it's so true. It's something that just happens, a switch that flips.

And I'm so grateful to have had my switch flipped. 

 

Image via Stanfield family archives