WELL, IT’S MAY AGAIN which means it’s time for Gather’s annual intergenerational issue.
About four years ago, I wrote to you in a Gather column about family—about whether I’d ever have one of my own and what I’d learned about it from the many generations of women in my life.
When I wrote that column, family was on my heart because I knew mine was changing. About that time, I was secretly scheduling ultrasound appointments I hoped my friends wouldn’t notice I only had juice in my wine glass until I was ready to make the official announcement: A baby girl was on the way.
Everything has changed
This year? I’m typing this column to you from my bed. My daughter, Zuzu (now 3.5), is asleep next to me. Her three older cousins are staying the night at our house, and I’ve just spent the last half hour perfectly positioning a nightlight in the hall.
“I’m scared of the dark,” the youngest, Rachel, told me matter-of-factly when she arrived—one of the many basic facts she’d want me to know in order to care for her properly. Later she’d tell me I also wasn’t allowed to let her watch television episodes of “SpongeBob SquarePants” or stay up too late. (I’m glad to report I did well on both fronts.)
I am only a few years older, but it feels like absolutely everything has changed. Does aging a few years magically make one’s life different? Of course not. It’s this new experience of motherhood that has changed me. Just as it is not age, but experience that defines all of us, regardless of where we are in our lives.
This new season of motherhood brings with it great experience and responsibility. I hope to use what I’ve learned to make the world better, kinder, more hospitable.
Sarah Carson, pictured with her daughter, Zuzu, is managing editor of Gather. This updated article is from the May 2018 issue of Gather magazine. Please check out the intergenerational articles and devotional in Gather this month. To read more like it, subscribe to Gather.