For anyone who has ever had a mother, @_amother explores the collective narrative of motherhood by holding space for anonymous stories. Whether or not you have children, want children, or are able to bear children, we examine motherhood from as many angles as there are people willing to share.
The image is of me standing on this hill by myself, trying to manage it all. It's a huge responsibility. They need a lot and my shit affects them and that weighs heavily on me. And when you do it alone there's nobody there to hold you up.
I’m sure it is an amazing experience to bring life into this world but I feel like that is not what I’m meant to do. People tell me that I’m going to regret it because I won’t have anybody when I’m old but I tell them that is not what kids are for.
I know that I wouldn’t be alive today if it weren’t for my first child. She was born into chaos, into a very thick, toxic dysfunctional situation. She became my higher power. She gave me this sense of purpose and hope. She injected a sense of worth that I never had until I had her.
I love children but I’m not sure I have the space I would want to give to my child. There’s still a lot of my own suffering I’m dealing with and sometimes I don’t know whether or not I’m willing to let it go. I know it so well down there in the darkness of the abyss. It’s like home, and there’s just no place like it.
I didn’t do any of the things you’re supposed to do first. I didn’t get married. I didn’t have financial security. I didn’t have my own life figured out at all, but I knew it was what I wanted for such a long time, and it was very purposeful. I still can’t believe I pulled it off. I feel pretty lucky.
I prioritized being an artist. I couldn’t have everything, and that was the most important thing to me. I’m beginning to accept that I might not have a life that has biological children in it but I feel like there are different ways of playing a mother role for people.
The moment I had my first child I couldn’t fathom the thought of anything happening to him. I’ve never been suicidal, but I feel like if my boys were killed I would kill myself. I can’t imagine how I would live. Yet I read people’s stories of how they get through it, they move on.
There are women who just know they’re supposed to be moms and I just don’t know that feeling at all. I don’t know if that means I’m just not ready for it or if I’ll never be ready for it. I wonder where that innate instinct comes from and why I don’t feel it.
When we started the adoption process they told us, “Nobody wants to give their baby up to lesbians.” I was so offended and I said, “I’m a woman, I can have a baby! I don’t need any of your permission!” I loved having a baby, I loved being a mom, it opened something I didn’t know was in me.
The most fun thing about being a mom is to do stuff with their kid, like taking them to the park or watching something with them. The hardest thing about being a mom is having to deal with all the baby stuff, like making them go to sleep and making them stop crying.
The hardest part of this year has been going back to work and leaving my son with people I didn’t know. I felt like I didn’t have any real models to grab onto of people that I looked up to as good mothers who had done that.
I wanted a child. I realized I wasn’t going to pick the right person if I followed my heart so I just followed my mind. I went with an ex who was an outstanding, kind man. I knew that even if I screwed up, he would be a good father. I wanted my kids to have a good father, a present father because I didn’t have that.
I’m in mourning because I’m not going to have a baby. I never thought I wasn’t going to be a mother. My age decided. When I turned fifty I realized, “Oh, it’s too late.” I was so busy with other things that it never occurred to me that I would lose that opportunity. I think I would’ve been a good mother.
I really wished to start my family over again. My mother and father were very complicated. I knew my having a son would make them happy, but it completely changed their relationship. They suddenly figured out how to be parents and it was a beautiful thing.
When I came out to my mother I realized I had disappointed her image of herself, and that was very difficult to navigate. It took a while to realize there it was just her own fears and expectations. She’s my mom, that’s all there is. There’s something unbreakable about that.
Your job is not done when they leave the house. You still worry about them, about their kids. I’m still emotional about my kids, I still care about them every moment, I want to hear about what they do during the day, during the next hour. Till they grow up, they’re gonna stay under your skin till you die.
You have to really work with your body in order to make it produce correctly.You have this fear that you won’t be able to produce enough milk for your baby, and then you have this fear that you’re producing too much. You learn to manage your expectations.