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Cynthia Bowman's family photo

Charitable Cause: Epilepsy Foundation

What is your favorite memory as a mother?

After my husband came home from a stay in the ICU, from a bad episode of status epilepticus, and our family was back together again. We had to keep the lights low and stay pretty quiet, because my husband was having such bad withdrawals from the drugs they had to give him. We all spent 5 days quietly watching movies and cuddling together, just happy to still have each other. We savored the time together. It’s amazing how the hard times can bring the greatest memories.

What is the best or worst “mom purchase” you’ve ever made and why?

Tiny baby clothes! When I was pregnant with my first child, I had no idea what to expect. I spent about $75, from each weekly paycheck, on newborn to 6 month sized baby clothes. I had an entire closet of organic, newborn apparel ready. When she came, she mostly stayed swaddled in blankets for the first month or so. By then, she had grown out of most of the baby clothes I had bought, without ever wearing them. I did not make that mistake the second time.

What was your biggest misconception about being a mom?

Before becoming a mother, I had grand ideas about how I was going to be. I had no idea there would be so many sleepless nights, hardships, and frazzled nerves, to wear me down. My greatest misconception was that it was possible to muster my fullest love for my children, in every moment. That I would feel like I was a “good” mom, or even should feel that way. I’ve found the ends of my patience and found survival to be the default mode. I didn’t know it would be so difficult and humbling.