Mother’s Day is tomorrow, and I feel I should write something about motherhood and being a mom because I’m a writer and I have a blog, so isn’t that what I should do? Not to mention I found out just this past Wednesday that I’m having another girl and today we decided on her name.
But to be honest I have nothing more to say about motherhood. Everything has already been said.
Motherhood seems so cliché.
I looked up the word “cliche” in Merriam-Webster dictionary, and the definitions are:
a phrase or expression that has been used so often that it is no longer original or interesting
something that is so commonly used in books, stories, etc., that it is no longer effective
something (as a menu item) that has become overly familiar or commonplace”
Motherhood might be commonplace or overly familiar, but it is certainly original, interesting, and effective.
I remember holding my daughter in my arms for the first time and a rush of emotion bursted forth from my chest. My heart throbbed I loved her so much. Tears ran down my cheeks because in an instant I loved in a way I had never loved before. And yet there was this yearning to love her more. There was pain with the joy.
Two-and-a-half-years later and my heart still bursts daily at the sight of my daughter.
I miss her when she’s sleeping late at night, and I can’t wait to see her in the morning. I smother her with kisses and ask, “Can I have just one more?” When she falls and gets for-real-hurt I run to her and lift her up.
Could this be how God feels about me?
After my daughter’s birth I understood God’s love for me in a way I hadn’t before. This is how much He loves me I would think to myself, knowing that my love was still only a fraction of God’s love.
Then my daughter grew, and I discovered she wasn’t perfect like she was at three-months-old. As I walked her to the time-out chair explaining for the third time that day that obedience is immediate, my heart would start to throb just like it did the first time I laid eyes on her. There was nothing she could do to make me stop loving her.
Could God feel the same way about me when I sin? Could His heart throb even more than when He first laid eyes on me?
For years I was single. I wonder if I could have grasped God’s love for me had I not gotten married and had a daughter. I ask myself questions like, “Can a person understand God’s love without being a mother? Do mothers have the blessing of greater depth of God’s love than other people have? Can a father experience God’s love in the same way through fatherhood?”
I don’t like to put parameters on God. I know women who never have children, and men, can experience God’s love, as much as is possible for a mother. But for me the experience has come through motherhood.
I would go without food and clothing and shelter for that child. And God went without for me.
I would search the earth over to find that child. And God continually searches for me.
I would give my life for that child. And God gave His life for me.
Motherhood is nothing but cliché, even though I don’t have anything new to say about it, because the depths of God’s love for us could never become cliché.
For those of you who are not a mother in the sense of birthing or adopting a child, remember that you a mother in secret ways that God sees. You mother the other children in your life – your nieces, nephews, cousins, friends’ children, students, even your elderly parents – by loving them, by being an example to them, by mentoring them, and by pointing them to Jesus. In every woman there is motherhood.
Happy Mother’s Day!