mama

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motherhood is so incredibly important and powerful and sacred and beautiful to me. so - even though my postpartum, sleep-deprived brain is pretty fuzzy today - i couldn’t let the week of mothers’ day pass without sharing some thoughts here! i want to write something eloquent and poignant that somehow articulates how much i love being a mom, how much i appreciate and adore my mom, how tremendously meaningful i feel motherhood is … but even with a sleep-fed and hormone-balanced mind i still couldn’t do this topic any justice.

so here’s just some totally scattered thoughts for mothers’ day, two thousand eighteen.

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love, love, love that someone calls me “mama.” the sound of little mo’s voice saying that simple word just has to be the sweetest, best, most wonderful sound in the universe. especially when he’s saying it while giving me a big hug.
and i love, love, love the feeling of tiny gabriel curled up on my chest, breathing through his nose, his chest rising and falling so tenderly. and his perfectly contented face after he finishes nursing! oh, it is heaven.
i anticipated that i would really love being a mom, but my expectations have been so far exceeded.

i feel like parenting (and particularly full-time-motherhood) is, in a way, a glorious opportunity to relive childhood - but armed with adult wisdom. watching my sons grow is illuminating, hilarious, uniquely challenging and so much fun.

this week i watched this little one-minute video several times and every time it made me cry. it’s so good! i also listened to these two talks (one / two) this week and gosh there’s some inspiring, empowering stuff in there.

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my mom is outrageously amazing. i am over here trying to figure out life with two kids and flabbergasted that my mom did it all - so very graciously - with nine. nine! she is a superhero, an angel, a wonder, and a saint.
(^^ this photo will always be one of my favourites in the world. i am that tiny baby, number nine! ^^)

and nothing has helped me appreciate my mom more than having her with me around the birth of my own children. i was blown away by her magic during the time of moses’s birth and then somehow even more amazed during her time with us welcoming gabriel into the world. both times she seriously worked her butt off in helping and supporting me and my growing family. she is love, humility, service and goodness personified. i am soooo lucky to be her daughter.

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my mother-in-law is another brand of magic and also an absolute angel. she has taught me so much through her example and her love. i am so very grateful for the gold she instilled in my husband, and i so deeply admire her. she just spent ten days with us and her presence and help was such a gigantic, fantastic gift. (also, she and moses are seriously bffs and i love that so much.)

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there are many women in my life that have helped to mother me, and to teach me about motherhood. i am so thankful every mothers’ day for my sisters, sisters-in-law, and close friends.

i absolutely recognize that motherhood is a painful topic for some. the hurt that surrounds some people’s experiences or lack of experiences with motherhood is so deep and real and hard. every mothers’ day i try to get better at heartily celebrating something that i feel deserves fervent celebration while simultaneously acknowledging and honoring that hurt.

i have to say, one great perk of being an american mom living in the uk is that i get two mothers’ days! england’s “mothering sunday” is in march while american mothers’ day is in may! ian asked me which one i wanted to celebrate and I was like, “duh, obviously both!” ;)
i had such a great (american) mothers’ day this year. after church and moses’s nap, we had a dinner picnic in our garden and then went on a family walk to kensington gardens. it was such a beautiful evening. moses ran through the tall grass, ian chased him, i nursed gabriel while sitting at the base of a big huge tree, we facetimed with our moms. then moses found some puddles (one of his very, very most favourite things), and we walked past some gorgeous neighborhood scenes on our way home. my heart was brim with contented joy.

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i was singing this song to moses today and looked up the full lyrics. i think it kind of sweetly fits a mother-child relationship:
i love you a bushel and a peck / a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck
a hug around the neck and a barrel and a heap / a barrel and a heap and i'm talkin' in my sleep
i love you a bushel and a peck / a bushel and a peck though you make my heart a wreck
make my heart a wreck and you make my life a mess / make my life a mess, yes a mess of happiness


i love being a mom and i am so grateful to be a mom. it’s my fondest dream come true, my most fulfilling role, my sweetest challenge, my most important work.
i am everlastingly glad that someone calls me mama!

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12 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Charity, Your gratitude is really beautiful.

    In future posts you may want to reconsider your use of the phrase "full time motherhood" when describing a stay a home mom or a mom that chooses not to work for pay. I know no "part-time" moms. I'm always my boys' mom, they are always in my mind/heart, and I'm always responsible for their well being even when I'm not with them. My "full time motherhood" includes when I'm working for pay to feed, clothe, and house them.

    I apologize if this seems picky, especially in your current sleep deprived hormonal state, but I know you think about motherhood and other women carefully so

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    1. Jenny, I recently really enjoy your comments; I used to think you were just trolling. Your recent comments seem to be more balanced. And I don't think that you have been particularly picky, but have been introducing a new thought.


      I am a mother and I work part time in an office. This of course doesn't make me a part time mother (for your exact reasons)! However what Charity maybe meant by "full time motherhood" - and which I would agree with! - is rather "full time mothering". In my experience, it is very different to be all day with your child, changing diapers, feeding, cleaning up messes, reading books, playing on the floor or carrying your child than to do this most of your day and spend some time in an office with other adults (and uninterrupted bathroom time ;-)).

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  3. You have such a way with words that paints such lovely pictures. I really think you should write a book. Happy Mothers Day.

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  4. I love this post! As a long time blog reader, I remember many of you posts about wanting to married and wanting to be a mother. I could feel your pain and ache and longing for both. Agonizing over the last few years over the very same desires, has made me melancholy when Mother's Day rolls around. It has been my greatest desire to be a wife and mother. But, it hasn't happened yet, and as the years pass and I get older,I am fearful that it won't happen. But, as I was reading this post, the thought occurred to me just how faithful Heavenly Father's Love for us is. This post bears truth of that, and I received an impression that one day I will be given the gift of an eternal companion, and experience motherhood, in Heavenly Father's way and in his timing. Thank you for posting this Charity, this post ministered to my soul!

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  5. I think your own insecurity about this issue comes out more in your comment than Charity being insensitive. Based on Charity’s comment above, if you are a full time mom, how were you excluded? I read a handful of blogs and I am shocked how nit-picky readers are. If you’ve read a blog for any amount of time, you know the nuances of the writer and where they are coming from. As a full-time mom yourself, you should cut other ones a break and check your insecurities before pouncing on all wording that makes you feel inferior, especially when you know that was not the intent!

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    1. Anonymous, exactly! Your judgement of me as "insecure" and your "shock" at comments like mine prove my point better than I could ever do alone. I certainly never mentioned the concept of inferiority that you chose to introduce into this conversation. As a long time reader of charity's I know she's not at all on board with this kind of mom to mom judgement which is why I gave her a head's up about the language she chose.

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    2. Yes, Anonymous! Someone is offended and everyone has to change their response toward them so as not to offend. I love that Jenny made a judgment (the very thing she was chastising Charity about) and then apologized, like that makes it okay. Good grief. I think we all know what Charity meant--and it was certainly NOT to discredit moms who leave their homes to "work to pay to feed, clothe, and house" their children nor insinuate that you care less about your children because you work outside the home.

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  6. Jenny, your comment reminds me of when stay-at-home moms get annoyed when they are contrasted with “working moms.” They say, we work every day! There needs to be some way to use language to describe the different ways we spend our days.

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    1. Yep. Stay at home mom (or SAHM for short) seems to do the trick. I see it all over the internet and know it is commonly used.

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  7. sorry, i'm just getting to this discussion about word usage when it comes to moms. i understand it can be a sensitive topic, and jenny, i appreciate you sharing your thoughts and feelings (sorry you were a little bit attacked for doing so). i actually hesitated when i wrote "full-time motherhood" but it was the best way i could think of to share what i meant (being the primary caretaker of my children, with them pretty much 24/7). "stay-at-home mom" just seems like a weird phrase to me, i guess. i don't really stay at home all the time...? but obviously i get what it's try to convey. and i totally see where you are coming from, jenny ... interesting discussion. i hope that we can all choose to give each other the benefit of the doubt and not be offended, but it is hard sometimes!

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