I have doctor friends abroad who are so meticulous in their planning it boggles the mind. One particular friend, he went abroad and came back for 10 days a few years laters to inform his mother he was ready to get married and scope out prospects, another year later for 2 weeks to get married and then since then at every given gap has methodically produced a kid. His wife, I must mention is as committed a doctor as he is and she hasn’t skipped a beat either. It’s scarily impressive how little their life derailed despite life’s curveballs.
I have another friend who was waiting for the perfect time in her rise up the corporate ladder to have a baby- so that she wouldn’t be mistaken as unambitious and be secure enough in her position to be able to take maternity leave with authority and come back to the same level of awe and respect.
Another friend was a teacher- and a damn good teacher she was. One of those people who would walk into a room and you had to listen to what she said. She wasn’t only thorough and updated but she was also inspirational and the moment she had her first baby, she decided to give it all up and stay at home with her and be the damn good mom.
I remember when I first found out I was expecting Nadi, I was a little worried. Not because I hadn’t wanted a baby- but because I was in a really good place at the time. My stint of being Teaching Assistant had borne fruit just 2 years prior and I was finally conducting my own Typography Course, my freelance work was a smooth seamless flow of clients, all with people who I trusted with whom I had built up a good relationship. I was being called in for juries, I was writing articles, I was supplementing my teaching methods and I was smack in the middle of where I had always wanted to be. In hindsight, it was probably the worst time to pull the brakes on life as I knew it, but at that time, it felt like a challenge- like I wanted to try on a new role as well to see what universes that would uncover.
It is a popular and comforting thing to say that motherhood comes naturally as breathing once you have held your baby in your arms- that the instinct is there despite the hiccups that the actual mechanics bring about. The instinct to nurture, protect, love. I’m not so sure that is only it. I think what comes more naturally is our need to maintain the standards and norms and ideals we have set for ourselves inspite the new role. I think what makes motherhood natural is only when you refuse to let it be all consuming and you allow it be a part of the existence you had dreamt of or already have carved out for yourself. Nature wasn’t meant to be completely altered, but slowly evolved so that the new fit is also familiar, while being new.