Motherhood is the best thing that will ever happen to you.
The days are long, but the years are short.
Soak up every moment.
Oh, you work? Who takes care of your kids while you’re gone?
Oh, you stay home? What do you do all day?
Are you having trouble losing the weight?
You should exercise more. You should try juicing, and fasting, and cleansing.
Love yourself for who you are.
Skinny jeans are on sale.
You got this.
Sprinkle kindness like confetti.
Stop worrying so much! Every child develops at their own pace. He’s fine.
Shouldn’t he be walking by now?
When do you think he’ll start talking?
Why doesn’t he sleep through the night?
I don’t know.
Why does he take the vacuum apart a hundred times a day?
Why does he repeat the same words over and over?
Why does he scream like that?
He has autism.
That was in that movie, wasn’t it? About the guy who loved Kmart?
My third cousin has autism. He lives in his parents’ basement. He plays video games all day.
I heard it’s from a lack of maternal bonding.
I heard it’s because of Windex.
My third cousin’s mother used Windex all the time. Whole bottles of it. I’m telling you, there’s something to it.
He has it because you didn’t breastfeed long enough.
You are not enough.
I did love him.
I do love him.
You didn’t try hard enough.
You didn’t protect your son.
I did try.
I am trying.
Calm down! You’re so defensive.
You look tired.
Have you thought about Botox?
Have you tried Retinol?
I don’t know how you do it. You must be exhausted.
Can you help with our fundraiser?
Can you make three dozen cupcakes for the bake sale?
Can you extend yourself beyond your capacity to make everyone around you happy?
No. I cannot.
These are the best years of you life. Don’t blink, because they grow up so fast.
Teenagers are the worst.
Toddlers are the worst.
Middle school? The worst.
If you work hard enough, maybe you can cure him. You can fix him.
What do you mean, he still doesn’t sleep?
What do you mean he washes his hands one thousand times an hour?
What do you mean he talks about knives and death and fear?
You give him medication? Do you really think that’s the answer?
My colleague’s nephew through marriage on his great-grandfather’s side gave his son medication and he had all sorts of terrible side effects. I can’t remember off the top of my head what they were, but I know it was bad.
Have you done all the research? I just read an article that said if the electromagnetic charge in the air is zero point negative at the time of birth, it’s likely the baby will have autism.
Or was it the humidity in the cumulous clouds?
Maybe overcooked pork chops.
I can’t remember off the top of my head exactly, but it was something weird.
You can catch it if a squirrel looks at you funny.
Really, it’s all about gut health.
You should be stricter.
You should relax.
You should eat clean.
Beat the belly bloat! Speed up your metabolism!
There’s always Whole 30.
No sugar, no carbs, no meat.
Dairy is terrible.
Meat is terrible.
Sometimes dairy is okay but really you need more protein and good fats like avocadoes.
Except avocadoes are high in calories, so maybe almonds instead.
Come on, it’s just hormones.
What, do you have PMS again?
It’s not a big deal. It’s fine.
You’re not taking this seriously enough.
You need to teach your kids practical skills.
Also, they should be soccer stars.
What do you mean, they don’t play lacrosse?
It’s important they learn an instrument.
In our house, we expect lawyers or doctors, nothing else.
My son is a prodigy with the piano.
My daughter is reading way above grade level.
Can he read?
Is he a savant?
Does he have a special skill?
Is he, what do you call it, high functioning?
I don’t know.
You are a warrior.
What if I am none of these things? What if I’m just a regular mom doing regular things and trying to make sense of this boy and his diagnosis?
Then you are wrong.
We told you how to feel, and now you should feel it.
Gratitude is the answer.
Post pictures that look good but not too good.
You should learn our very ideas and our mantras and our opinions, and adopt them as your own.
This is motherhood. It is a whirlwind of love and grief and fear and hope.
It is unanswered questions, and hollow expectations, and unrealistic ideals.
I don’t care.
I am brave.
I am trying.
Until the very day I die, I will protect him.
My tender son.