My motherhood journey has been a wild and rewarding ride.
I had my first daughter at 21. While friends my age were out staying up all night and mixing drinks, I was staying up all night [with a baby] and mixing [bottles]. Then after a couple years came her sister, and then finally, another sister. It's hard to put into words how much motherhood has shaped me. I've grown up alongside my children and we are constantly learning from each other.
I have an independent, creative, introspecive oldest. A sensitive, nurturing, and compassionate middle. A sassy, fireball, trail-blazing youngest. I see in each of my children a quality of myself that is so pronounced in them that I want to foster it and encourage it to bloom and grow. And then there are the qualities that are uniquely their own that I discover as they grow. We figure it all out together.
Being a mother has taught me long nights, where one kid has a bad dream, then another kid needs a sip of water.
Motherhood has taught me that my "plan" is basically only there for my own comfort and can, and probably will be, thrown out the window at a moment's notice. Sometimes life requires detours to afterschool ice cream and Target for sketchbook paper... again.
Motherhood has taught me a profound appreciation for my body. For what it can do, how I have little silver stretch marks on my belly that I don't even try to make go away, they're just there- reminding me that I grew life three times. Having girls, motherhood has taught me that I'll be damned if I ever say a harsh word about my body in front of them. It's a piece of art, as is there's, and I'll never convey differently.
Motherhood has taught me to embrace my inner instinct and intuition. It's lead me to find my "Mother Wolf" and rely on my root. I'm not a fighter by nature but I've faught for what's best for my my girls when I've had to.
Motherhood has taught me imensely about love and the beauty of grace. How tomorrow is always a new day, and there's really not much that can't be fixed with a hug and a little chocolate.
I'm continually learning and growing. Motherhood has pushed me to be better, and then better, and then even more better. Because my babes deserve that and it's in me to give, and I'll always give, and give, and give.
I'm brought back to something I read years and years ago by Ann Voskamp:
"Because God needed someone to love the least and the little into real whole people, and He knew that to love is to suffer so God made a mother.
God had said – I need someone to get up at midnight and scoop the most fragile of humanity close to her warmth and rock though she can hardly stand and nourish though she’s mostly sleep-starved and change the diaper and the sheets and the leaked on, leaked through, and leaked down clothes though she’ll have to change them in the morning and next week and that won’t change for years.
So God made a Momma.
That God had said I need somebody with a strong heart.
Strong enough for toddler tantrums and teenage testing, yet broken enough to fall on her knees and pray, pray, pray.
Someone who knows that in every hard place is exactly where you extend grace, who looks a hopeful child in the eye and says yes, even though she knows every yes means a mess but this is how you bless, who has the courage to keep letting go because she’s holding on to Me.
So God made a momma.
God said I need somebody who can shape a soul and find shoes on Sunday mornings and get grass stains out of Levis.
And make dinner out of nothing and do it again 79, 678 times, and keep kids off the road and out of the toilet and in clean underwear and mainly alive though she’s mainly losing her mind and will put in an 80 hour week by Wednesday night and just do one more load of laundry.
And one more sink of crusted burnt pots.
And keep on going another eighty hours because raising generations matters and weaving families matters and tying heart strings matters and these people here in hidden places matter.
So God made a momma…
It had to be somebody who could comb back pigtails and tie up skates just-right tight.
Who could pretend she remembered algebra and how to get home from here and that really, she was just fine, that it must just be the silly onions.
Somebody who would run for the catch, jump on a trampoline and play one fierce game of soccer and not give a thought to all those labors and her weak pelvic floor. Somebody who’d stay up late with a science project that never ends, who’d get up early for the game in the rain, somebody who’d wave at the door until the taillights were out of sight and still be smiling brave.
So God made a momma.
It had to be somebody willing to keep loving when it made no sense because that’s what love does.
Somebody who knew that life is not an emergency but a gift — so just. slow. down. There are children at play here and we don’t want anyone to get hurt and the hurry makes us hurt.
Somebody willing to feed and lead, lay down her life and pick up her cross, give of her time because they have her heart. Someone who knows that we all blow it — and what matters is what we then do after.
Someone who could humble herself into the tender sorry that covers a multitude of sins.
Someone who would live like a Giving Tree — who would give grace, give life, and give thanks — eucharisteo: the giving thanks for every grace that gives back always joy.
Someone who would stand in the mess and the midst and give thanks anyways — because eucharisteo always, always, precedes the miracle of discovering that the Giver Himself is always, always more than enough.
Someone who would live it a thousand times: Give thanks — and discover that the Giver Himself is the Gift and He alone is always, always enough.
Someone who would pour out and bend down and surrender not only to the physical pain of childbirth but the far deeper, unending heart pain of letting go, letting go, letting go – from the womb, from the arms, from the front door. Someone who would know that umbilical cords can be cut — but heart strings never can.
Someone who’d bow her head at night over the girl sleeping with the doll in the crook of her arm — and give thanks to her Father for this hidden life that’s turning a gear for the whole spinning world.
So God made a momma.
You." ~ Ann Voskamp
Happy Mother's Day, to all you Giving Trees who became Giving Mothers.