I had done it all.
I had read all the books.
I'd read articles online.
I'd tracked the size of the growing "fruit" in my belly, and I'd registered for everything I'd need.
We took our time making the nursery look perfect. White and gold adorned the room around splashes of pink (at Daddy's insistence) for our little girl.

I thought I was prepared. I thought I knew what was coming.

And for all practical purposes, I did.

Not only had I spent a lot of time with a good many babies, but I'd read every piece of material available. After all, as a trained journalist, I know how to do my research. 

I was perfectly prepared for how little sleep I'd get. I was prepared for the crying, the poopy diapers, walking the floor with baby, and spit-up on my freshly laundered clothes. Everyone tried to tell me how hard it would be and that I just couldn't understand until she was here.

But I have to say,  I actually did expect exactly what I ended up getting when it came to all the tasks and daily chaos that comes with a baby. None of that has been a surprise.

But there is something I was not prepared for. There is something that no one told me, because no one could tell me. There is something that sent a jolt to my heart and made me realize that, until the moment I gave birth, I had not known my purpose in life.

It was love at first sight.

It's true. It exists. When I laid eyes on my child, the precious being who I did not yet know, I fell deeply, hopelessly, and forever in love. THAT. I was unprepared for that.

And now I know and understand God's purpose for my life. I understand my mission: Raising her--loving my sweet Sophia--and teaching her to love Jesus and to love others. She is my mission. Being her mother. That is what matters.

And because being her mommy is my life's purpose, I don't mind being pooped on. I don't mind losing sleep or having a messy house. I don't mind being all-consumed by her crying demands. She is worth every moment. I was not prepared to love the way I love now.