Many of you deeply appreciated Judy McVean's beautiful comments for Mother's Day. Because her words are something you might like to keep, here is what she said: In the course of a normal day, as moms, we can find ourselves in so many roles ….. mediator, teacher, doctor, referee. And some day’s experiences are such that our kids display the best of what we wish for them and we flush with pride and secretly whisper to ourselves, “Boy I’m a good mom! I really get this!” Then, usually on the very next day, it all comes apart and we wonder how we will survive the next hour, alive, together.
This is part of the rich pageant of being mom, isn’t it? Yet we do survive and thrive in the midst of the trial and error, the joys and sorrows and just plain wonderment of it all. Many times I called out to God, and my friends, for wisdom, patience, guidance and energy – I still do.
In being a mom to 2 sons, both adults now, I look back and can see a bunch of things I wish I had done that I didn’t, other things I’m so glad I did, and most of all I see that it’s not over. Our relationships are constantly evolving and I’m glad for this as life offers us endless new starts, and continued opportunities to improve and strengthen who we are with one another.
We all need new starts, don’t we? I started over many times with my kids. I wanted so much to be a good mom but I wasn’t always sure what that looked like. I vacillated a lot …. Some days I’d give all the power to my kids thinking that the freedom was kindness. Other days I’d grab the power back and enforce rules because the freedom became unmanageable and we were miserable. The result, of course, was confusion – for all of us. One of my new starts was in developing the confidence to create consistent expectations of the kids and myself and to attempt to be faithful in applying those on a daily basis. The Good Mom as the Firm, Consistent Mom was big learning for me and more stabilizing for my sons. Maybe this resonates for you?
I’m keenly aware that Mother’s Day and all the surrounding hoopla isn’t always a ‘happy’ experience for many. The word ‘mother’ can evoke complicated responses. Sometimes it’s because of a difficult past. Sometimes it’s because as a mom you’ve been hurt deeply by a child or have failed a child in a significant way. Maybe for some, becoming a mom is the stuff of dreams, not reality. Maybe your mom is missing in your life. If these descriptions come close to describing how you feel - be kind and gracious to yourself. Talk to someone. Pray for healing guidance to navigate this ‘barricade’.
Can we make a deal? Can all of us make a promise to consciously encourage a mom this week? Regardless of how you connect to the ‘mother’ category, how about finding at least one thing you especially appreciate about your mom, or someone else’s mom, and telling her about it. Dads, this is your opportunity to make points! And yes, I know that your wife is not your mother, but if she’s the mother of your children, that counts!
My prayer for each of us is that we will know that our Mother/Father God has arms big enough to hold everything that’s filling our hearts. As his child, may we seek the nourishment we need to grow as women and moms, able to nourish ourselves and encourage others on this amazing journey. May we never lose sight of His promise that he will bring to completion the good work he has begun in all of us - you, your kids, your home. Bless you mom!