The pain of motherhood is more than just the act of giving birth. It's the pain of touching the stove to learn that it's hot, falling down stairs, the first scraped knee or elbow. It's the pain of being made fun of at school, the first broken bone or gash needing stitches. It's the pain of teaching consequences, washing a mouth out with soap, taking away privileges. It's the pain of being avoided, ignored, glared at. It's the pain of being replaced by teachers and friends. It's the pain of not fitting in, not making the grade, not being popular. It's the pain of that first rejection, the next rejection, any rejection. It's the pain of seeing the hurt in your child's eyes or voice and not being able to scoop them up in your arms and kiss it all better. It's the pain of letting go as they leave for college, the military or married life. It's the pain of watching them learn what true love really is. It's the pain of that first fight when you want them to come home and you know that they can't. It's the pain of watching them go through the consequences of foolish decisions and choices.
It's the pain of standing by helplessly as they rush headlong into adulthood and it's the pain of standing by helplessly as they learn the cruelty that is adulthood.