Nothing prepares you for the emotionally painful part of parenting. For when life is hard for your little one and you cannot just inhabit his body and make choices that would make it easier. For the worry that accompanies you even when he’s sleeping, or playing thoughtfully next to you, or in your arms crying, or laughing a full belly laugh. Nothing prepares you for the metallic clang of panic when something is wrong. For the sadness that because life started so hard, it will always be a little bit hard. For the reality that wounds don’t just go away with bottomless love (wounds build character, you know, but what happens when you are at a place in your life where you can’t yet embody that character, you can just embody the wound). You can navigate it, yes, and that’s what is done everyday, thoughtfully, passionately, carefully, intuitively. But, still, sometimes, when you are alone, when it is okay to feel what you feel, the sadness of it, the energy of it, the overwhelming nature of it catches your throat. And you understand that this feeling, this fear edged with worry edged with love will be with you for the rest of your life. And the vastness of that, that love, of what it looks like and feels like, astounds you. You will walk this world, you realize, for the rest of your days with every nerve ending bared, hoping against hope that you are enough parent to keep the sensation from being too much for your beautiful child.