It’s like I grew up being encouraged to be anything I want. I spent years in schools always focused on the next level of achievement: being ready for high school English, college level course loads, post-graduate bosses, the next career move.

And now … I’m a work at home mom, and it feels like whiplash for my life goals.

Becoming a mom has often felt so disjointed from all the preparation I made to become an adult. That my childhood led to this motherhood–working during naps on subways and doing terrible work for all 3 of my “jobs” while wiping his butt and dreaming about potty training and worrying all the while that my son is not getting enough of me–feels so right in my heart and confusing in my head.

Where were the classes on multiplying minutes? Where were the quizzes on how to endure changing life seasons and make new friends without losing the old? Who lectures on what to say yes to and how to say no to good opportunities? On not actually changing the world but living with those burning desires?

I don’t feel prepared to be a mom and I’m definitely not prepared for my next meeting, that deadline and this year’s tax receipts. I can’t always remember the dreams in my heart or that this season won’t last more than a few years. I’m not prepared to fail Augusrine at the level all good parents fail their kids, and I’m not ready to answer the Lord Almighty about how I steward the gifts and talents he gave me.

But I try. I focus on the now; but, I don’t think I ever learned how to do that. I’m returning to play and relearning to imagine, melting in a compassion I couldn’t believe existed, and tying myself in knots as I keep everything in our lives straightened out. At the end of the day, I’m the one who keeps going, who doesn’t quit, who makes sure all the lights are off and the door is locked and the dishes are done before collapsing into my insomnia to remember the dreams and passions of my youth.

My therapist thinks I have too much on my plate, but my husband thinks I don’t remember to eat enough. I think that I don’t know how I’m going to guide my son into the adult world when I hardly know what to do here myself.