Sunday, May 11, 2008

Ode to Motherhood

To all the moms:

Happy Mother's Day!

You have worked so hard, all year around. I hope you get to take a day off, and enjoy your special day. I hope you love the festivities and/or any loving gestures your family bestow on you. Even if none of your family is around to celebrate this day with you, I hope you make a point to do or have something you love today. Hey, this is your special day, and you totally deserve it.

I just called my Mom in Taiwan. None of us could spend Mother's Day with her, and my dad had to attend a meeting today. I was so glad to find that Mom was in a good mood, nonetheless. I said, "Well, Mom, since Dad is not home, you've got a day off! How are you going to celebrate your special day?" She told me cheerfully that she's got some ideas -- she might visit this or that city, do some shopping, visit her favorite coffee shop, etc. She was getting herself ready to go out and enjoy her free time. I'm pretty sure she is going to dress up and have fun out on the town. Way to go, Mom! That's the spirit!

Motherhood is life-changing. I'm positive that you'd agree with me. Being a mom has changed me on so many levels. It's the most challenging job I've ever taken on, and the most amazing journey I've experienced. I'd never trade it for anything in the world.

Before you go out for your Mother's Day celebration, here are some thoughts for you to ponder.

You are loving and caring... You give your children unconditional love, the highest level of love in the world. You are the go-to person when anyone needs TLC - a hug, a kiss, some encouraging words, or chocolate chip cookies. You are love, personified.

You are patient... Reading "The Little Engine That Could" for the 1,000th time, with the same level of joy and enthusiasm (even when you were so tired you could barely keep your eyes open); getting your toddler potty trained; helping your child with challenging homework; sewing your child's school play or Halloween costume... that takes patience.

You are committed... Hey, you took on a life-long commitment to be a mom, didn't you?!

You are strong and you persevere... Think about what you had to go through to bring your child to the world -- the pregnancy, the labor pain, the adoption process -- need I say more? Think about all the challenges you've gone through to take care of your children and make sure they are healthy, safe and happy. You are much tougher than you give yourself credit for.

You are disciplined... You get up every morning to take care of your family, cooking, feeding, bathing, cleaning... day after day, after day. If that's not discipline, I don't know what is.

You take charge and get things done... You are the one who organizes and coordinates everyone's schedules, and make sure nobody misses doctor's appointments, soccer practice, band concert, birthday party, anniversary dinner (even if you have to plan it yourself).

You know when to say no and stand your ground... You have no problem telling your toddler or teenager what they are not supposed to do, even if you know they are not gonna like you.

You are creative... You've created a loving home for your children. You use your creativity in the ways you show your love, the foods you cook, the stories you tell, the imaginative plays, the silly songs you make up, the garden you planted and all the family vacations and memories you help create.

You are powerful... You were given the power and privilege to co-create a life (your child), to help your child reach his/her full potential and create a better world. That's enormous power and responsibility.

You are beautiful... Have you ever looked deeply into your child's eyes and see your own reflection? You are absolutely beautiful... no laugh lines or stretch marks could ever diminish your beauty.

I hope you take a few moment here and let it all sink in.

Next time, when someone else, or that nasty little voice in your head, tells you that you are not loving enough, strong enough, pretty enough, disciplined enough, or that you are too "selfish" for taking care of yourself, or whatever, tell them to get lost. They simply don't know any better.

You are perfect and whole, just the way you are. You deserve to be loved and adored, just like you love and adore your children. Now, go ahead and celebrate this day the way you truly deserve.

Forward this message to any moms you know who could use a little validation or encouragement. As moms, we ought to support and empower one another.

Take good care of yourself... you are irreplaceable!


We are the Wafflers! said...

As ever, a very inspiring post. Now of course I am not a mother, but like many errant sons, I can always use a remender of what a commitment motherhood is. Like most moms, mine did not stop being a mother when the kids left the nest, and while sometimes it makes me feel frustrated, I know I should recognize it more for the gift that it is.

...but don't tell my Mom I said that.

ZenKitty said...

Jay, thanks so much for your comment. Yup, my mom didn't stop being a mom (or treating us like kids) even after we left home and became parents ourselves. :-)

I know she loves us very, very much.