We are the moms who hug, dance, and snuggle. We are the moms who get overwhelmed, whose snarls sometimes come easier than our smiles. We are the moms who live in the push-pull of exhaustion and joy, in the tumultuous world of feelings and giving all of ourselves.
We are the moms who pray our children will fly while a tiny part of our heart grieves their flight from us, because we are the moms who love those children with every fiber of our being. We’re not sure where they end and we begin, but we know we didn’t begin until they arrived.
We are the moms who work around the clock in a million different ways. Praying. Cooking. Cleaning up. Carpooling to school and dropping off at daycare. Guiding. Loving, always loving. Scolding and worrying. Kissing boo-boos and wiping tears. Breathing deep, in and out, over and over. Chasing their feet and their hearts. Answering emails in the middle of the night. Pulling them back and drawing them in and sending them out. Scrubbing toilets and remembering details and packing lunches and signing papers and pouring out.
We are the moms who love children we didn’t birth. We are the neighbors, aunties, sisters, friends, and church grandmas who love these kids as though they’re our own. We snuggle up to beloved little ones during the sermon at church and pass them hard candies to squelch the wiggles. We attend birthday parties and graduations and weddings, bearing gifts for these dear hearts, setting up tables and making food, and then cleaning up at the end of the day. We rock little babies and help big kids pack for college, tearing up at the thought of them driving away. We light up when our phone dings with a text from a precious high schooler. We read stories and sing songs and carefully choose cards to pop in the mail for every holiday.
We are the moms who haven’t had a night out in ages, and who crave one like oxygen. Who run on grace and caffeine. Who build a meal off of the scraps pilfered from kids’ plates. Who go through more coffee shop drive-thrus than we care to admit. Who are exhausted from being “on” all day at work, and coming home to be “on” longer still.
We are the moms who drive through McDonald’s for milk because we ran out and just cannot drag ourselves into the actual grocery store. Who pay for a latte in change dug out from between the minivan seats. Who cannot make it to church without bickering with our family on the drive. Who are consistently seven minutes late to every appointment. Who perpetually lose socks to the washing machine, and have been known to purchase new underwear instead of washing the pairs we already own. Who take our alone time seriously and guard it fiercely — just like we do our kids.
We are the moms who long for more. More grace. More patience. More coffee. More time (always more time). More space in home and heart. More money. More sleep. More Christ in us. More life in our days. More quiet.
At the same time, we are the moms who long for less. Less laundry. Less fighting. Less yelling. Less clutter. Less selfishness. Less guilt. Less busy. Less stuff. Less dust. Less hustle.
We are the moms who sit in the hallway in tears during bedtime, drained. The moms who sit in empty houses in tears because there are no more babies to tuck in at bedtime. We are the moms who ache for those we’ve lost, for those we’ve wanted, for those we’ve asked for, for those we’ve begged God about and bruised our knees over in earnest prayer. For the babies we couldn’t carry. For the children we’ve lost to heaven and red tape. For the grown children we couldn’t hold on to as they flew our coop to make their lives. For waywards and prodigals and could’ve-beens.
We love this life even when we don’t like it. We love these kids with all of our beings — even when we may not like them very much. We thank God for the gift of love He gives in the form of sticky hands, flown coops, late nights, early mornings, birthday celebrations, cards in the mail, trips to see each other, texts sent, calls placed, and prayers whispered.
We are these moms, and God is for us all.
As Mother’s Day approaches, we know that it is a complex day full of many emotions and experiences. Know that at (in)courage, we are praying for each of you in this season as you remember, celebrate, grieve, or enjoy motherhood and what it means to you. Every single woman who loves, encourages, and nurtures those who become part of the next generation is doing amazing work and is to be celebrated.
Above is an excerpt from our book, A Mother’s Love: Celebrating Every Kind of Mom, which is full of reflections on God’s heart. Featuring unique and diverse stories from the (in)courage community, A Mother’s Love offers heartfelt encouragement to all kinds of moms, whether they’re a mother in a traditional sense, a spiritual mother, or a mother-like figure who breaks the mold. This book is sure to help any woman share a meaningful gift with someone who has been impactful in her life, a new mom learning the ropes, or a close loved one facing the joys and challenges of any stage and type of motherhood. Compiled with all women in mind so we can celebrate those who made us, shaped us, helped us grow, and loved us well, A Mother’s Love is a beautiful gift for the moms in your life.
Listen in today for a bonus episode of the (in)courage podcast as Becky Keife speaks with author Bonnie Gray! They discuss Bonnie’s new book, Breathe. Listen to the player below or wherever you stream pods!Leave a Comment
Oh my goodness, What beautiful words. I smile, cry and rejoice reading this.
This is just wonderful for today! I brought tears to my eyes just reading this. So true about all of us mothers and we are all
mothers even if we have no children every woman has someone to mother! God made us for that purpose and we can find
the good even in the everyday mundane!
Brenda M Russell says
Thank you for sharing what I feel every day.
My heart is tender towards babies and children. They have so much to grow into and we have to teach them as the Holy Spirit Teaches us from day to day.
Mothers are God’s gifts to families. I’m so blessed because of my grandmother and mother who taught me the love of Christ.
Pray for guidance and set the best example that you can to love and forgive and ask for forgiveness.
Enjoy your day.
This was a wonderful description of being a mom, especially when motherhood goes unplanned. After an 8 year estrangement with my oldest, just as described, I still love him with all I am. Thankful to the Lord for helping me find discernment in my brokenness.
Ruth Mills says
Such beautiful words! I do have 1 quibble with your statement “we know we didn’t begin until they arrived”. The moments God gives before children (in whatever shape or form they come in) are still God ordained, nurturing, informing time preparing for whatever is next. With or without a mothering role. No wasted molecules of time. We begin when God says so not when a particular role or relationship begins. We are valuable, complex beings because of Who made us not because of what we do or role we fulfill. Yes celebrate being moms!!! Celebrate the Creator Who’s idea it was to have moms to start with!!! ALL begins with Him.
Claudia Batke says
So beautiful and so true. Would not trade my life as a Mom for anything!
Mother’s Day is a mixed bag of emotions for me. Five years ago my youngest son went home to Jesus. His suffering is over and I miss him every day. Thank You Jesus for Your sacrifice and all of Your promises.
Dawn Ferguson-Little says
Anna love this post even though have not got kids and never have. Was not braved enough to give birth. Did Childminding for 19 years. Yes even though not a mum and never will be. I love the Nieces and Nephews my sister’s have given me. I am the only one saved along with my Husband. So I know God is for us all and loves us all. So I pray for them all. Love them all as if they where my own. Plus say God word verses after prayed over them over them and claim them over them. I treat my sister’s kids as if they were my own. My sister’s know that. I tell them I love them so does Jesus. I live my Life for Jesus in front of them. Pray they will see Jesus in me and my Husband want what we have. That is know Jesus as well for themselves. As that would make me so happy. Love today’s reading. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little xx
Beth Williams says
Moms are super special human beings. They care for the children & family more than themselves. I met one mom today 04/15/23 at a clothing give away. She was looking for clothes for her youngsters. I took it upon myself to find her some nice clothes also. She needs to be pampered. Most moms love their lives even i the midst of chaos. Yes! God is for all of us!!