Since I embarked on this great journey of motherhood I have sought to be understood. Sought to have someone tell me I’m doing a good job, not just a good job, but a worthy job. I want someone to tell me that the countless hours I spend singing (not on a stage but in a quiet nursery with a babe pressed against me), cleaning, and well… mothering has immense value in this world.
Because let’s be honest… whether you stay at home like me or work a 9-5 the term mother has been made less than what it is. So maybe it’s just me or you too, but I’ve spent the year and a half since that beautiful moment in the delivery room trying to prove to the world that the life I lead is worthy of recognition. Sure there’s a day devoted to us (but dogs also get one), sure my husband comes home and asks me how I managed it all, and I’ve heard a few “I could never do that.” What I have wanted though is for my job, my role, as a mom, to be a valuable one. To be one that is revered right up there with CEO’s, Managers, and big wig company chairs. When I tell people I am a “stay at home mom” I want them to ooh and ahh in wonder as if I have just told them I wrangle tigers. (it’s almost the same) They don’t though, in fact, a few times men have asked me, “what else do you do.” (I complied a detail minute by minute schedule and sent it to them via email with a bible verse…jk)
But why does it matter?
Because I need it? Because its true? Because it makes what I do more important?
I think the reason we drown ourselves in diapers and loose ourselves in all exciting parenting novels and do poop cheers when they poop and it’s been three days. I think what makes every late night lullaby and sleep deprived 3 cup of coffee type of morning worth it will never come in the form of praise from others. It wouldn’t matter if the government started paying me for my 14+ hour days or if men stood in awe when I described in detail the glorious wonder that is my day. It wouldn’t matter if I got to wear clothes that weren’t covered in goldfish residue or enjoy a cup of coffee without having to watch curious George.
Because what I really know is this… Sacrifice doesn’t always mean suffering and while the human in me craves a shred of significance in this tattered world the Jesus inside of me praises God I have the opportunity to raise little hands and feet to sing his praises. The Jesus in me knows that in ten minutes little whimpers followed by the sweetest sound of “ma-ma” will interrupt my world again and I will have to surrender what I am doing to answer the cry of one of the greatest gifts I’ve ever received. The Jesus in me knows that I have experienced more of his love in the past 17 months that I ever knew existed, the love that compels me to keep moving, keep loving, keep smiling, and keep enjoying even when the world looks on and wonders “what I really do all day.”
I will do what my mother did and her mother before that and raise little lives. Little lives that will affect many people. Little lives that will turn into big ones, where they will face this big bad world head on and I will spend hours on my knees praying I taught them well. I will take joy in their triumphs and cry in their pain and for as long as they let me I will be an ear to listen and a voice of wisdom (or so I pray). Because if two year olds didn’t turn into adults then my job would be pointless but this is just the start and I only have 18 years before I send them off so there is lots of work to do.
Happy Mothers Day to all, no matter what that looks like, traditional or in a way you never expected, I pray God shows you the immense value of your calling.