I never grew up dreaming of my future husband and children. Don't get me wrong, I knew it was in the cards for me; it just wasn't on my radar for a long, long time. I don't think it was in my DNA to think about marriage and motherhood, but thankfully I had a strong dose of nurture that helped dominate my tough nature. The nurture came in the form of watching my parents who actually liked one another, and truly epitomized the "best friends" concept. It also came from having 7 brothers and sisters, and, for better or for worse, there was always someone at home to play or fight with: an invaluable gift. Eventually, I also realized that I was a daughter of God, and with that knowledge came some major responsibility to a future husband and kids.
So, motherhood came in a two-fold epiphany. When our firstborn Owen arrived 6 weeks premature, I was completely unprepared for the newborn intensive care unit, aka the NICU. On the ninth day of Owen being in the NICU, I had a complete and full meltdown. I had had enough of being at home without our son, and was sick of staying up all night crying and trying to pump, while wanting to jump off a bridge because my hormones were practically yelling at me by the second about how wrong it was to have just had a baby and to not have him home with us. So, I sobbed and cried and wailed and had a glorious temper tantrum. It was awesome. And, Nate was there to pick up the pieces (also within that motherhood epiphany was the 'holy moley I really love and need Nate, forever' epiphany).
So, the mama bear was officially born, and I waltzed right into that NICU with Nate, my partner in crime, and demanded that they let us bottle feed Owen, and let him go home, or we would take him out ourselves. I call that the '9th day motherhood' epiphany. From that moment on, I knew that this was it: I was in it, I liked it, and I could do this mom thing, and I'd be darned if I was going to let some NICU nurses hold my son hostage.
As you can imagine, the second epiphany came 4 years later, almost to the date, with the arrival of Evey. Evey was the full-blown, 'you are commited to being a mom and you'll be doing this for the rest of your life' epiphany, and I rolled with it from the second she was born. It was an a-ha moment of Evey being the missing puzzle piece of fulfilling my life's work and purpose.