This week we pause to celebrate Moms. Being a mom is both the most blessed and most challenging role I can imagine. And while I dreamed of being a mom since I was just a little girl, I have to admit that not every day has been just as I dreamed. The days I gave birth to each of my seven children will be the most amazing and incredible memories I will ever experience. Holding their tiny soft bodies and becoming instantly aware of a love so intense and special goes far beyond my wildest dreams. And to realize that the love I felt was never divided, only multiplied! Likewise, some of my deepest moments of pain have involved watching a child hurt emotionally or physically. It hits you in places of your heart you never knew existed. So today, let’s pause to honor both the joys and challenges of mothering.
I see you weary mom,
In between the busy schedules of play dates and after school activities,
getting meals on the table,
working or volunteering outside the home, cleaning house,
training children, and everything else you do to keep your family afloat,
you value the importance of being a mom who is loving, helpful, and supportive.
You want to be influential and feel effective.
You know, like what you do each day truly matters,
that you still exist with dreams and joy, and that the energy you put into mothering
can and is making a difference and appreciated.
But, it’s not easy.
You sometimes feel overbooked and overlooked, longing to feel less lonely and more supported.
I understand! And I’ve got your back!
Now for those who scroll quickly, please don’t miss the freebies at the end of this article! Be sure to go get your free instant downloads!Motherhood: a journey through time investing your whole-hearted efforts, energy, and self to train, nurture, and love a child through the ages and stages of their life Click To Tweet
So on this special weekend for Moms, I’d like to pay tribute to some of the differing mother roles that some of you may be playing and needing to know you are seen and valued. You see there isn’t a one size fits all approach to mothering. Each of you has different circumstances or situations. And I’d just like to individualize a little support or understanding as I appreciate the many different walks of motherhood.
Not ready but it’s OK
Some of you came into mothering before you may have felt ready. Perhaps you were a young mom or surprised with the news that you were adding to your family before you were quite ready. To you, I want to say, “You can do this!” You are learning the art of flexibility and adjusting, and that is one of the best traits to have as a mom. You may feel that there were still things that you had hoped to do or experience, but becoming a mom early caused you to fast forward some of those dreams or hopes. I can assure you that mothering is worth it. Yes, there are some rough and tough seasons, but you will get to a point that you will firmly believe you wouldn’t change your path. Mothering will grow you and change you…and for the better. You’ve got this!
Maybe you came into mothering children that were not yours by birth. You have shown a love that is accepting and sacrificial. Granted there may be days you wonder if this was the right choice or what you should have done, but take heart. Even mothering birth children can make you question yourself! You are on a path of learning and growing. You have learned early on that love is a decision, and that will help you go far in this mothering role. There are no guarantees in mothering. We can give a lot and might not get much in return. You are willing to put your heart out there despite the risk. I admire your ability to give and keep giving, even when it is really tough. You have a love that many might not be able to provide. Give yourself lots of grace and keep on!
Be Brave Single Parent
Perhaps you came into mothering with a teammate but now find yourself doing the parenting thing alone. You have shown great courage and a love for your child that can persevere. While you may feel like you are juggling numerous roles, don’t forget the true value of mothering. You are a family with your child. Please resist the urge to see yourself or your family as broken. There are times in life when things don’t go as we plan, and we have a choice to give up or get up. You can do this! Your love is one that will protect and withstand the challenges that come your way. And your child is learning from your brave example. Your child may not always remind you that you are loved, but you are. Keep on keeping on!
Heartache from Loss
I know there are mothers out there that have mothered a child they never got to hold, and you lost the little life that was growing inside. Or some may have struggled with fertility issues. Maybe you were able to have one child but not grow your family as you’d hoped. However your mothering experience has been tainted by loss, it feels unfair and wrong. I’m sorry for what you have had to experience. While these circumstances don’t make sense, you have learned to love deeply and value the time you have with a precious little life. Your heart has had to experience both excitement and heartache in short bursts and how hard it can be to feel like your loss is understood. Please remember that you matter. From that very first moment you knew that little life existed inside you, you had given of yourself. That too is a very special kind of love. Give yourself lots of time to grieve that loss and express those difficult emotions. You matter and so does that little life you loved.
You have what it takes!
Maybe you have entered this mothering gig with the idea that you would have a certain number of kids and somewhere along the way, God sent an extra and unexpected blessing. And maybe at times, you question if you really have what it takes to see this through. You may feel a bit tired and weary with the tasks you thought you had completed but find yourself journeying through again. Don’t lose heart. Your love is one that knows how to put others first and will persevere even when things don’t go as you’d planned. The gift of your love is valuable. You will change and grow through the seasons of mothering. Please don’t expect yourself to have the same energy and excitement you did the first round through. You have honed other skills and talents that will shine when your energy and excitement feel a little lacking. Your love for each child is different and unique, so please don’t put pressure on yourself to do it like the other times. You are a great mom with a lot to offer! Keep your chin up!
I also know there are those who are mothering their children’s children. And I can only imagine that you may feel like your reserves run low at times. You may have looked to this time in your life as a time to slow down, but instead, you are racing once again. You are seen and valued. Your sacrificial love is not taken for granted. While others may not voice their appreciation often enough, please know that you are giving above and beyond and making a difference. You can do this! You are making a difference.
I must also take time to acknowledge those who have had a heart for mothering but may have never had the chance to conceive. Not one Mother’s Day goes by that I don’t think of and pray for these mothers-at-heart. I can not imagine the pain of wanting something like being a mom and not having the chance to ever experience it. The deep and painful reminders all around you as you see mothers and children together every day and everywhere! My heart aches for the woman who longs so desperately to be a mom and each month you face the realization that it hasn’t happened. So on what must feel like a difficult day to the one longing to be a mother, please know you are cared for and prayed for. How I wish that each woman who was willing to give of herself to express the sacrificial, protective, and valued gift of love as a mother would have the chance. Please know you are valued too.
Missing Mom on Mother’s Day
It also bears mentioning that on this Mother’s Day there are many that are mothering with the heartache of missing their own mother. Few people impact our lives like a mother. The loss of one you held dear, whose input your valued can be difficult. I am sorry for the pain you are experiencing as you grieve the loss of your mom. I have several friends who have experienced this already. I dread the day that I can’t pick up the phone and connect with my mom. I know some of you are fresh in your grief and some of you may have the grief resurface on Mother’s Day, though your loss was years ago. Either way, I want you to know that your heart is heard. I care about what it feels like to you, doing life without your mother’s presence. I pray your Mother’s Day can be filled with sweet reminders of the special memories you shared and that you will feel a special refreshment in being the mom to your children that you desire to be.
Mom is a Job
Whether you are a mother to many or mother to few, whether you mothered by birth or by choice, whether you’ve mothered for years or are just beginning…may you know and feel how special you are and how much you are valued. It goes without saying that mothering is one of the most important jobs in the world. You may feel as though you are taken for granted or unappreciated.
Mothering can sometimes feel like a thankless job. Try to recall often those sweet little voices that talked about loving you “as much as all the chocolate in the world” and offered gooey kisses when the going gets tough! Regardless of how it feels, each stage of mothering really will go by quicker than you think. So try to relish those sweet moments and ride the wave through the tougher ones! It will get better.
I asked my 7-year-old son, “What is a mom?” His response, “It’s the person who cares about you, is kind to you, and loves you.” Simple enough.
When I asked my 9-year-old about what a mom’s job is, this is what he had to say, “ A Mom’s job is to take care of you, help you, love you, and be there when you need them.’ If it were only as easy as it sounds!
I know each woman’s journey through motherhood feels as unique as the children we mother. I hope that this weekend especially, you will have the chance to grasp the enormity of the role you play. You are affecting lives and shaping hearts. You are leading and guiding. You are loving and learning. You are giving and giving again. You are sacrificing and training. You are the one who is giving of yourself no matter how tired and weary you may feel, to be present and show your love and acceptance.On a daily basis, mothers are God’s hand extended to her family and children. Click To Tweet You are doing a job that is among the most important in the world! You are affecting future generations and helping mold lives and hearts for the purpose for which they were created. That’s no small job! So please hear me when I say, “You are loved and appreciated. You matter and have great worth!” You were handpicked to be just what your child needed. Keep on keeping on! You’ve got this!
And I am here to support, encourage, and inspire you however I can! Take some time today to do those things that bring your heart some love, joy, and peace. Get a little rest and don’t forget to treat yourself to something that puts a little smile on your face. Whether or not your family can or will appropriately express their thanks and gratitude, I hope that you will feel treasured and cherished not just today, but every day. You. Are. Loved.
P.S. Don’t worry, I won’t leave you without free instant (no registration required) resources for Mother’s Day!! Resources will open in a new page to download:
Sometimes as moms, we just need a few kind words to remind us that what we are sinking ourselves into really does matter. I know you don’t like to ask your kids to tell you kind things, but it feels good when you can actually hear how they really feel about you! So I am giving you permission to print out these activities and give it to your kids (one is designed for younger children and the other for older). You can even say you were asked to! It is good for kids to learn that gifts don’t need to be big or grand or expensive. Their words, and taking time to express them are a gift. Help your child take some time today to practice that.
Need some self-care ideas to pamper yourself today? You might download the Effective Self-Care tip sheet!