I have a passion for motherhood. Even as a young child I can remember that being my sole desire for adulthood. This passion was not born out of having a wonderful example in my life but like many passions that develop it was born out of a lack in my heart.
I was a "surprise" child born into a very Irish Catholic family; my mother was 39 yrs old and a working woman. This was during the time when woman were always homemakers and children were born in their youth. I had an older sister and brother who were blessed to have our mother at home while they were young. As a child, I never understood the whys behind my mom's needing to work and it was truly a need. There were many friends around me who had their moms home so I did witness many normal relationships; I just didn't have one. My mom was not in the best of health and by the time she got home from work each day, she simply did not have the energy or patience to deal with a active child. My dad worked in a grocery store and his hours meant he was often out of the house in the evenings, thus leaving the burden of caring for me on my mom. My moms' parents both died while she was young so she didn't have a strong example of mothering either. During this era mother-daughter relationships were not like they are today. Mom and I were never close; I resented her working and I was alone so much I resented not having siblings to play with. As I got older, I went through years of rebellion with my mom but my dad and I were extremely close. My mom tried her hardest with me and one of my biggest regrets over the years was that I did not treat her with honor.
When I was 21 my mom suddenly had a stroke which led to her death. I can honestly say it took me many long years, probably ten, to work through the complexity of our relationship and repent of my sins against my mom. When I came to Christ many years ago, I realized for the first time that He was using my childhood to make me into the mom I am today-and back then it was quite a bit of work He had to do. I truly missed the closeness that I saw other mothers and daughters share and I poured myself into my daughters, working on that relationship with them.
Throughout my married life I have been so blessed but having such a tight bond of friendship with my two girls. If there is one thing I could pass on to others it would be to cultivate those family relationships whether it is mother-daughter, mother-son, father-mother, sister-sister, sister-brother, brother-brother. It is easy to get caught up in the business of life and have surface relationships with others but having a deep bond will bless you. Share what's on your heart on a regular basis, be it your hopes and dreams, or trials and concerns. Open your heart to those you love for you never know when you might not have the chance again. There were so many things I wish my mom and I could have shared and I didn't have that chance.
When my girls were in high school, a homeschooling family that we knew experienced a tragedy that impacted our family. The mother and daughter were having a disagreement about something and although they were very close the daughter left for her job without saying goodbye and giving her mom a hug. On the way to work that summer day her little VW bug was hit and run over by a Costco truck, instantly killing the teen. The shock waves rippled through our community and the grief for that mom. She would never have the opportunity to hug her daughter again and say I love you. That summer day my family and I began a simple ritual that has become a pattern for life-whether in person or on the phone when we are saying goodbye we always tell the other that we loved them. I am so much richer by the lives of my girls; they are my best friends.
Is there a relationship that needs the balm of the Lord on it today? Prayerfully consider how you might reach out to that loved one, even if it is just in prayer.
Blessings on your heart today.