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Somebody’s Mother

Simon came home from the hospital six weeks ago today, but I’m still surprised to think of myself as someone’s mother. I’m sure that part of this is because I’ve spent the past 36+ years as Ivan’s daughter, Pearl’s granddaughter, Steve’s sister, Stewart’s niece, etc.

But another part of the shock comes from the primacy of that role. Most of us–the lucky ones, anyway–love our moms and dads more than almost anyone else and go to them for comfort when we are upset. They are our psychic shield. I can remember a day in college when I went to get dressed, grabbed a scarf that had been my mom’s, and felt close to her and reassured when I could smell her laundry detergent and perfume on it.

Now it seems I have a similar effect on Simon. I’ve never been a kid magnet. Kids like me OK, but I’m rarely the favorite. Except for Simon. I’m clearly his favorite (co-favorite in all fairness to Matt). When someone holds Simon in my presence, he nearly always follows my voice with his eyes. And when he’s upset, I have the best chance of calming him down.

This is all natural and obvious I’m sure. I hold him the most. I feed him. He heard my voice for weeks in utero. He’s mine. But after so many years of being on the junior end of family relationships, it’s a shock and wonder and be on the other side.

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