Posted by: Kate | April 30, 2008

Figuring it All Out

I’m not much one for contests… I don’t enter drawings, I don’t buy lottery tickets, and I’ve never entered artwork or writing or photography into any sort of competitive event.  I’m not sure if it goes back to my evolution toward a less-competitive lifestyle, or an over-awareness of the sheer unlikeliness that I would win given the numbers of it all, or a fundamental laziness.

But (you could hear that “but” coming, right?  Like a breakup “but,” without the fake flattery) sometimes I get weak.  Like when there’s a contest asking me to post a photo that shows what motherhood means to me, as we sneak up on Mother’s Day, as I am mired in an ongoing attempt to get pregnant again, as I have a dozen other posts swirling around that I’m not quite ready to unleash just yet… I’m weak.  I cave.

Because there’s this photo, taken in late April, 2000, when I hadn’t been a mother long enough to realize I was tired.  I hadn’t yet figured out the value of a consistent routine, because I hadn’t done anything long enough to establish a routine.  I still had bruises from childbirth, fumbled clumsily through breastfeeding, and ached, from the heart out, whenever I looked at this tiny, outside-of-me creature who had arrived five shocking weeks early and promptly upended everything I thought I knew about life.  So we laid there, this tiny thing and I, and stared, and tried to figure each other out.

We’re still trying to figure it all out, eight years later, and some days I’m not sure I know all that much more than when I started.  But most of the time, I realize that I’ve come a long way, and am starting to get a vague glimmer of just how much more there is to learn.


  1. I think this photo is beautiful. And so are both of you!!


  2. That is an absolutely beautiful picture Kate!!!

  3. GREAT picture! So raw.

  4. I think you’ve got a very good handle on it, Kate. Not speaking from any position of knowledge, just from agreeing very much with what I read here on the subject.

    Post the link to the voting, everyone else does, already know my favorite.

  5. Everytime I see this photo I just think how amazing it is and how much it really says “MOTHER”

  6. Beautiful words to go with a absolutely beautiful photo!

  7. great picture. me and my girlfriend are just becoming parents and our little girl is 7 weeks today. im so going to miss when she is this age.

  8. What a beautiful picture. Make sure you let us know if you become a finalist so we can all vote for you!

  9. What a great photo.

  10. That is an amazing photograph. I love the eye contact you two are sharing.

  11. Totally awesome photograph. The old saying a picture is worth a thousand words fits perfectly here. I hope you have this hanging up in your house.

    Hugs my friend.

  12. Great photo Kate and at 51 years of age, we’re still trying to figure each other out. It’s the longest learning curve of my life but one I wouldn’t swap for the world.

  13. Love the photo!

  14. Oh, I love that picture! Absolutely gorgeous!!!

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