The Accidental Sidelining of Maternal Joy

Have we made so much room for the struggles that there’s less space for our contentment?

Mary Cassatt, Mother’s Kiss, 1890–1891; Drypoint and aquatint on paper, 13 3/4 x 9 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of John and Linda Comstock in loving memory of Abigail Pearson Van Vleck; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

At my first prenatal appointment for my first child, my doctor asked how I was feeling.

“Good, I said, “but tired.” I wasn’t throwing up, just sleeping.