I’ve always been this way, good with children. If there’s such a thing as a maternal instinct, I have it. As much as I’d like to say I always played with Legos and didn’t prefer my Cabbage Patch Kids and doll house and play kitchen, I’d be lying if I did.
Not that having a maternal instinct and being domestic, as it were, go hand-in-hand, but for me they do.
So when I was first in the throes of infertility after its discovery, I for awhile believed that my being good with children was a farce, and something forced on me. But truly, it’s not.
I internally cringed when my therapist told me that I’d find ways to ‘mother’ others. I did not want to mother other people’s children, you know. I had wanted to mother my own, dammit.
But here I am to say that she was right, and I have known that this thing about myself is real and true and I can’t divorce it from my empty womb and healing heart.
I act on it all day long in my job with elementary aged students, attending to their sad faces and knee scrapes and tattling about their classmates. I act on it when I ask the youth if they need a ride home. I act on it with my many nieces and nephews, even from afar. I act on it when I run with a friend’s daughter during a 5K.
It’s just manifesting itself much differently than I thought it would, but I’m so grateful for those opportunities that other afford me with their children because infertility or not, it’s who I am.