I came to motherhood (“am2”?) late in life. Mothering is the most complex, difficult, challenging work in which I have ever engaged. It also is the most rewarding, exciting, frightening, all consuming work that I will ever do. I would not trade this life for anything.
The night before this essay was due, I was up late (well, late for me, the mother of a seven-year-old boy Nikolai and six-month-old twins Natalia Luz and Nadal Sergio) working on the last set of edits — putting the finishing touches, if you will — on the draft of my musings on Rosenblum’s provocative piece. At 10:55 I could no longer keep my eyes open so I put the draft to bed, planning on reviewing it one last time with fresh eyes in the morning, right after I dropped Nikolai off at the bus to school. Pleased with how the work shaped up, I saved the draft, turned off the lights and headed for bed.
The house was dark and quiet, everyone else asleep. At 11:01 I got in my warm bed and sighed out my exhaustion. My head hit the pillow, and I immediately started to drift off. And off went the baby monitor. I looked at the clock: 11:03 stared at me in big red numbers. On went my glasses to search for the bottle of milk to fill up her belly in the hopes of a few hours’ rest after the feeding. That is when I realized that I was not in the final stages of my draft at all; the essay that I needed to write had not even started being written. The draft with which I had been so pleased a few minutes earlier revealed itself to be an irrelevancy; a work of the head. I needed to write this with the heart.
Berta Esperanza Hernández-Truyol, Revisiting Mothering? – A Mother's Thoughts: A Response to Darren Rosenblum's Unsex Mothering: Toward a Culture of New Parenting, 2012 Harv. J.L. & Gender Online