‘We forget what it is to go into labor. To be wracked with pain so excruciating we can’t fathom ever withstanding it. A mama is meant to forget.’

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“We forget what it is to be pregnant. To carry life within our bodies, to marvel at every kick and flutter, to hold our breath from the moment we see those two faint lines and let it go a little as each week slowly passes.

A mama is meant to forget.

We forget what it is to be ‘any day now.’ To wait and worry at every twinge and toss and turn all night with no reprieve and to feel the most exhilarating excitement and all-consuming fear churning inside our growing bellies.

A mama is meant to forget.

We forget what it is to go into labor. To feel powerful and utterly powerless at once, to be wracked with pain so excruciating we can’t fathom ever withstanding it. To trust in those at our sides and those holding our hands and those who help us cross the threshold of birth in whatever form that takes.

A mama is meant to forget.

We forget what it is to be so desperate for sleep we are nearly delusional. To rock colicky babies until grooves are worn into the floor, to scrub bottle parts or pump parts or soothe aching breasts. To wake at every sound, to stumble from our beds to heed midnight cries, to wonder if we aren’t losing our minds just a little bit.

A mama is meant to forget.

We forget what it is to want to lock ourselves in our rooms and scream into pillows and beat our fists with rage. To crave just a moment of peace and a whisper of quiet. To wonder how we can possibly make it through even one more day.

A mama is meant to forget.

We forget the discomfort of pregnancy, the agony of labor, the despondency of those early days, the exasperation of the tender years.

And as time goes by,

We continue to forget. We forget the moments of impatience, the hours of exhaustion, the days of worry, the weeks of hard, the months of change.

We forget the sacrifice and the heartache. We forget the boredom and the frustration.

For the years, they pass, and with them the sharp edges of our memories. They start to soften, to blur and fade and gently ease. We forget the pain for all the beauty, the failure for all the triumph, the sadness for all the joy.

A mama is meant to forget.

Because it’s in our ability to forget that we find our ability to love.

So unconditionally. So fully. So purely. So endlessly.

We forget so that we can love without resentment or rancor.

Without pretense or requital.

Without hesitation or pause.

We are mamas, and we are meant to forget.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Shower Arguments. The article originally appeared here. Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.

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