Sunday, May 11, 2014

// M O T H E R H O O D //

Being on the other side of Mother's Day, it feels like such a rite of passage. Actually, my first Mother's Day was 3 years ago.  I had just found out that we had lost a baby at 11 weeks gestation. Going through a miscarriage had been devastating and exhausting, and celebrating Mother's Day just a couple weeks later was incredibly painful.  We were at church the morning of that Mother's Day and there was a blessing said for all the moms. A friend at the end of our pew, who knew of our loss, looked over at me and silently mouthed the words "happy Mother's Day." And that was the extent of my celebration.

Last year Johnny missed Mother's Day by just a couple of weeks.  We went to the farmer market that day and, as I was very clearly with child, many a person wished me a happy Mother's Day. And I was beaming with anticipation.

Now Johnny is here, and he has brought so much joy with him.  And He has given me the gift of motherhood.

Motherhood is one of those things that permanently changes you. I am a mother. I will be a mother for the rest of my life. There is no going back. Every part of me now gives evidence to my identity: my unwashed hair, my tired eyes, my stretched out skin.

Motherhood is this strange dichotomy of highest heights and low lows, extreme pain and wild joy. It begins with probably the greatest pain many of us will ever know. Medicated or un-medicated, pushing out a new life is hard. It is a feat. But then that new life, completely helpless, 100% dependent, is placed on your chest and whether by a miracle or by hormones that intense pain is obliterated and you know only wild joy and fierce love.

Motherhood is physical, demanding the whole body at all hours of the day (and night). I quit my gym, mostly because I didn't have time to go anymore. But I joke that I don't need to go because life is my gym now. Try carrying around a couple gallons of milk with you wherever you go and you'll get what I mean. 

Motherhood is making me grow in holiness, whether I like it or not. My tendency is to be selfish. Being a mother makes me be selfless, as well as patient, and gentle, and loving. I am becoming a better person because I am a mother. 

Motherhood is making me know Christ more. I have never understood the unconditional love that the Lord has for us so well as I do when I look at my son and know that I will love him no matter what. And when he screams because I have just thwarted his plans to get into something that would cause him harm I say, "child, I know your upset, I see your tears, but you have to trust me when I say I know what is best for you." I am seeing a small little glimpse of how the Father must see me. That is a most beautiful gift.

To all who have gone before me on the this road of motherhood, my own wonderful mother who has taught me so much, my grandmother with all her wisdom, my mother-in-law who gave me my best friend, and all the other women who are showing me on a daily basis what it means to be a mother-- thank you and Happy Mother's Day!


We have now established a tradition of going to the farmers market on Mothers Day. This year we followed it up with Mass at the Cathedral.  Here are some snaps from our morning as a family. Enjoy!

The perfect example of motherhood.

Johnny with his namesake: St. John the Baptist

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry for your loss those years back. Heartbreaking!!

    Great pics! He is so photogenic. :)


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