Updated: Apr 29, 2020
Back in college, taking care of babies was like eating candy. They were scrumptious, smooth and rounded like little loaves of bread. I don’t even remember being upset by their crying. Maybe because they were not mine, I did not worry about them in the same way, so I could be easier around them. Why I did not fret over them was strange, but freeing. Later, in my 30s when I was a mother for the first time, I had nightmares of leaving my daughter on a shelf somewhere and forgetting her. It was the worst dream, wrenching. Even this week, I had this anxiety dream: the tub was full, bath toys bobbing about, but I was doing something else, and realized I had been out of the room and not paid attention for minutes. My daughter could be drowned. But instead, she was playing safe and sound on my bed. Probably the dream is about all the transitions my daughters are going through. But the idea that I could ever be a carefree mom is funny to me – I was definitely not a hippie mom. In this picture, sent by my friend Ilze who I worked with in college at the University of Connecticut Child Development Labs, I am 19 years old. I wonder what I worried about then? Likely, love. Not babies. I had no idea how lucky I was.