I'm not complaining. Just like every mom, I have a shoe box on my closet shelf, stuffed to over-flowing with every construction paper cards, finger paint hand prints, and assorted "coupon books" offering me a free hug, or dusting... because I love you.( I am keeping those for the time that I'm old and frail then I plan to cash every single one, I'll never have to pay for home health care!) and if my house ever catches fire that box will be leaving with me! I love knowing that I have these small things around me reminding me that motherhood IS NOT a thankless job. I have a million thank yous, most of them were perishable and used up right away. For example; Many nights of reading to my kids when they were little turned into a reading request from my 16 yr. old son. Every goodnight/good morning offered is still being returned every morning and night. and all those dandelion filled paper cups that littered my counter top meant I had a vase full of fresh cut flowers every morning. These small things didn't last but they left a lasting impression on my heart!
I also need to thank my mom, who managed to survive 8 teenagers, and has found her revenge in 21 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren! She gives all of the credit to her own mother who survived 6 children, 19 grand kids, 27 great-grand kids, and 32 double-greats before finally "resting in peace and quiet". I love all the great mothers who bless my life every day. My Grandmothers, mom, sisters, friends, and neighbors who know that there will be days when even we will question our sanity and wonder "why the Hell we chose to have kids anyway" only to find the rewards of motherhood smacking us in the face when the lips of our rotten brats kiss us goodnight and then have the audacity to say, "Love you, mom". That is when God gently reminds us that he has, indeed, prepared us for a great and powerful purpose. After all it would take someone great and powerful to ever want to be a mother!
I wrote the following poem years ago. It was my aunt's council that inspired the words, and I have given it to only a few people within that time. My intent is to open the hearts of mothers so that we will know our place in God's plan is never overlooked or diminished. That every minute of joy or frustration in every hour we spend mothering our children is an hour, minute, second spent in the undivided attention of our Lord's most beloved creation. I need the reassurance that comes from my Lord, and I am forever amazed that it is found in Jesus.
She stood at the gates of heaven, and stared off into the light
"How will I know I am worthy?" she wondered,
for she had lived more times in weakness than might.
Memories of struggles came easily to mind,
and moments spent in prayer because peace was hard to find.
"Dear Lord, I could not make it and always asked for more,
I fear I spent my life kneeling on the floor!"
"I asked, I begged and pleaded, for you to guide my husband's hands
That shaped our sons from boyhood, and taught them to be men."
Again, I got down on my knees and cried to you in prayer,
"Keep safe these precious daughters you have given to my care."
Once more I knelt in pain and grief, as the world forced against me...
The evils of mortality!
"Dear Lord, forgive me, I could not do it on my own!"
Then she got down on her knees, and bowed her humble head
And was about to pray once more, when a voice spoke up instead.
"your need for me was ever there, humility is no sin
asking for those simple things is why we let you in."
Then gentle hands reached out and helped her feet to stand,
"Welcome home dear sister" and Jesus took her hand.
I wish every one of you a very happy Mother's Day! May each one of you find joy in knowing no other job will ever be as rewarding, If not in this life, definitely the next! (Heaven has a standing reservation for mothers) and as long as women continue to want children, there will be revenge to be found in "GRANDmother hood"!
"The very word "motherhood" has an emotional depth and significance few terms have. It bespeaks nourishment and safety and sheltering arms."