I always wanted to be a mother from the time I was a little girl and expected to be one. This was the pattern of our lives in my family. My mother’s family had 16 children; my father’s 14. Those who survived to adulthood had children. It was a fact of life.
Of all the gifts God has given me in this life, I am so very thankful for the gift of motherhood. I have one biological son whom I absolutely love and adore. I am thankful to be his mom. And I am especially thankful for my own mother, who cared for my two brothers and I, and loved us with a fierce love.
In the times of my life where I felt unloved and unlovely, I always knew my mom was on my side. I’m sure I will never know all of the prayers she’s prayed over me, or all the sacrifices she made so that I could have “things” when it meant she would have to do without. And in turn, I hope I have followed her example with my son.
Motherhood comes in many forms. Biological children are a gift from God, but so are the other children, or the other young people who come into our lives for a season, into which we are allowed to pour love and nurturing. I was a classroom teacher for 30 years. The interaction I had with my students included a certain amount of “mothering.” I am one of those people who would have loved to have had a house full of children – biological, adopted, or foster. It didn’t turn out that way and I trust that God’s plan for me is always better than my plan for myself.
I know many wonderful women who have not been through the “giving birth” process physically, but have loved and nurtured others in their lives exactly like they would have if they were the biological mom of many people in their lives.
Our society has diminished and undermined the value of motherhood, I fear. Women are encouraged to be career driven, looks oriented, self-absorbed individuals who take care of themselves and fulfill their own desires, rather than wanting to be tied down with the responsibility of children. It is their choice and I don’t condemn anyone who doesn’t want to be a mother. It is good that they don’t have children if they can’t spare the time needed for parenting.
I once told my son, “Being your mother may turn out to be the greatest calling in my life.” Only time will bear witness to that.
I thank God for my mother, for being a mom, and for all of the godly women in my life who poured into me over the years, and for the young people who have allowed me to love them.