I love the word epiphany. It is such a grand way to express new enlightenment. Also, it sounds like candy; it reminds of the old-fashioned divinity my mom used to make at Christmas, all fluffy and pastel and ethereal. I taste sugar when I say it.
I have had in my life a few epiphanies after which I felt very sure of myself and very adult. The last of these occurred days after my twins were conceived, when I of course did not realize I was pregnant. The epiphany was this: I realized that I was not a “child-centered” sort of person. I loved my daughter more than anything, I was crazy with love for her, and as she got older I was beginning to enjoy our time spent together as companions, but I was also an intensely introverted and individualistic person. I liked to be by myself. I liked to do things for myself and myself only. I thought that it would be great if my daughter could have a sibling, but that two kids was certainly a good place to stop. And that if we didn’t conceive this time around, it would be okay. Epiphany in a nutshell: I was a one or two child person. In the past, I had maybe regretted that we wouldn’t have the choice of a large family since we didn’t start having children at a particularly young age and weren’t exactly well-off anyway. But now I realized that I only wanted two, or maybe just one, if that’s what the universe had in mind. I felt very adult as I realized this. How very in touch with myself I was, and how mature to realize when I had enough—kids or anything else.
Like every other epiphany I’ve had that made me feel adult and mature, in retrospect this one seems pretty stupid. I haven’t had any epiphanies since. Having three young kids keeps my brain too busy and tired to spend any time being self-congratulatory about enlightenment. Or maybe my epiphany is that life is just too grand for my little epiphanies to approach, anyway. They’re such sugary little pieces of fluff, and life is such a great, burning ball of light.