There are many things that took me by surprise when I became a mother.  I wasn’t prepared for bringing that little being home, the constant tiredness, the fears, the first fever….

But nothing prepared me for the the constant leaky faucet of my tear ducts!

It begins with the overwhelming joy of birth and seeing my baby for the first time:  tears.

Then it continued with the overwhelming exhaustion that comes with lack of sleep.  I could be sitting at the dinner table and tears would just flow.  I’ll never forget having my birthday meal with both sets of grandparents about two weeks after my first child was born.  My husband gave me my first sewing machine and I simply cried.  Ridiculous, silly, tired-beyond-belief tears!

Time brings strength (and more sleep) but still the tears continued.  Now it was the commercials….A Hallmark commercial would bring me to tears! 

I love these water bottles the girls gave me for Christmas!  Since they are made in China we have decided not to drink out of them, but they make lovely vases!

Through the ups and downs of life, the tears would continue.

– The first time my son played on the stage of the State Theater
– when my son won the “Student of the Year” award and a high school scholarship
– when my daughter won the same scholarship
– when her teacher told me that she cried when my daughter laid down her coat for a classmate, with a muscular disease, fell on the rainy ground
– when a young man’s mother told me that she thanks God every day for my daughter saying “join us for lunch” on his first day of high school
– when my son turned toward the congregation and carried the cross down the aisle as an altar boy at my dad’s funeral
– when my daughter and nieces sang “Homeward Bound” at my dad’s funeral
– when my daughter plays the theme to “Rudy” at any Mass she can possibly sneak it in
– I have cried at almost every musical and concert my kids have participated in.
– hearing my son’s professor say how talented and focused he is

There have been painful tears, too:

– struggling to help my son, who struggles in school
– dealing with family crises, fears of the unknown
– crying with my son when his girlfriend broke up with him.

Yes, motherhood has opened the floodgates of my tear ducts.  But it also has opened the floodgates of my heart.