claiming my own

For you who have formed me into "mother", I am in serious gratitude. For your laughter and eyes and everything in between that makes up the magical concoctions of YOU. I swoon over your stories and play bear hugs with your essence.
Keep teaching me little ones. I am so eager to learn.
The house is quiet this morning as Josh took the children on a secret adventure to the store. I was laying in bed, turning thoughts of motherhood over like the pages of a good book. Holding each thought in hand and moving it forward in anticipation of what is to come, yet holding it tightly with memory of what has been. Somehow sewing this moment into the spirit of the past and the faintness of what is yet to be. Coming into motherhood feels a lot like that to me. It is this territory like none other. A space that constantly requires fullness. I would have never imagined it to be what it is. I am glad I never really tried to imagine it in detail. For me, it just sprang up in my life like a jack-in-the-box. I found myself as "mother" long before I even considered what that meant. But slowly, I raised my own understanding...and with each passing moment, I form a deeper, more personal existence of what it means for ME. Sitting in my women's studies classes in college a few years ago, seeing the world in a new way and finally discovering a language for those values rooted in my core...my mind wasn't focused on what it would be like to mother a child. I might not have recognized myself had you painted a picture of what I would be doing a few years down the road. But yes, perhaps I would. I would take this space and treat it like any other accomplishment and aching I have. I would give it everything I have and I would do everything in my power to make it my own. I would claim motherhood and I would find my voice within it. I would use this space to teach children about equality and tolerance and community and peace and taking care of the great mother earth in all her abundance and beauty. I would do these things, not because I am a woman...not because I HAVE to...but because it is what I want my children to know and it is because I want to be able to look in their eyes and tell them I gave my fullness to showing them these principles.
I have a lot to figure out on this road. I have so much to learn and discover. The complexity of motherhood is constantly amazing me. Sometimes thrilling me, sometimes wearing me out but always making me move forward with my heart wide open...trying to be available for all that love. I hold space today for the mothers. For every "type" of mother there is...for our individual choices and styles...for the work we do inside and out of the home...for the big and small ways we give effort towards the children in this world and the planet we are to leave them with. I hold space for our differences and our similarities and the great truth that there is not one "right" choice. I hold space for choice. I hold space for all the women of this world and for our own unique ways of mothering...not always children but life and community and causes and ideas.
I honor these women. All of them.
happy, beautiful day.


Debbie said...

Happy Mother's Day to you dear friend. Once again, beautiful writing. You are an amazing mother with an incredible family to show for all your work. I hope you enjoy your day and whatever surprises await you! :)

S. Barnes said...

Oh Happy Happy Mother's Day my sweet friend! Thank you for your words, your strivings ... you beautifully articulated the mysterious and unfathomable territory of motherhood. I hope your day is simply lovely!!!

Nonnie said...

happy mama's day, sass.....sweet.sweet.blessings...
and what a wonderful adventure you are on....love you
your mamacita

Gillian said...

Mothers are born too, when they give birth. Until that point, you are not a mother. Motherhood changed me radically.
I viewed the world differently; wanted to make the world a better place for them. You don't realize how much you have to lose until you have a child; they are THE most precious commodity.
I remember telling my own mother that, that had I known how precious and sacred children were, I may have reconsidered motherhood altogether. Now that I have gotten over the initial fear of being responsible for the welfare and wellbeing of another human being, I relish the job. It is the most challenging thing I've ever done!!
Happy Mothers Day Jess!!!

PixieDust said...

From one mama to an incredibly beautiful mama... I hope your day was gloriously bright... seeing the pictures of your little ones, I know it was. The love they have for you, the trust you all share is there in their beautiful eyes.



bella said...

Happy mothers day to you dear mama.

Annette said...

what sweet pictures, and such lovely writting, I hope you had a sweet day! Annette