What it means to be your mother

Happy Sunday all,

What it means to be your mother

roses-66527_1280It’s mothering Sunday in the UK and although I was originally going to talk on another topic today, I guess as the energy of the day is predominantly about appreciation for our mothers. I’ve decided that it would be a good thing and an appropriate thing for me to reflect on this area of my life as it colours every facet of every decision I make, every action I take and every word I speak. All are defined by the fact that I am a mother.

 manuscript-203465_1280A personal note

It occurred to me though that rather than define motherhood universally and discuss it from a distant, third-person perspective, I’d prefer to write a more personal note to my children and tell them what it means to me and has meant to be their mother. If what I have to say here resonates with you feel free to plagarise my words and let your own children know what they and being a mother to them means to you.

Where to start?

As a dear friend of mine always says…

’Indeed!’

Where do I start?

To Ella, Jake & Lily…

Being your mother has been THE most amazing, challenging, frightening, exhausting, exhilarating, hilarious, frustrating, heartbreaking poignant and beautiful journey I have undertaken.

wooden-boat-258953_150From the very beginning, being your mother meant being the best example of the values I hold to be true so that you could emulate them. I have always been determined to ‘walk my walk’ and not just ‘talk the talk.’ It is vital to me that I ‘show you how.’ The thing I strive for the most, is to one day have you three look at me with pride and say ‘That’s my mum…isn’t she amazing?’ You see your approval means the world to me. To know that the people I brought into the world acknowledge that I did all I could and they’re OK is all I wish for.

pregnancy-466129_1280The pleasure and the pain

From the moment each of you made the fluttering inside my womb, creating the feeling of nervousness and butterflies, the feeling that said ‘I’m here and I’ll see you soon’ to the moment you were placed across my breast and in my arms and until I leave this earthly plane you will receive nothing but my undying love and unconditional acceptance.

Being a mother is fraught with contradictions and expectations of what we are and should be. I have had to be strong and gentle, critical yet supportive, friend but at the same time mentor and guide, we’re cast as Madonnas, perfect and untouchable, yet we’re expected to be relate-able and ordinary at the same time.

In the beginningmother-429158_1280

In the beginning what it means to be your mother meant willing myself back from total and complete exhaustion and with you Lily potential death as I shook and trembled after giving birth. My body so truamatised it threatened to go into shock and the midwife and doctor rushing to do what they needed to avoid me fitting and slipping into unconsciousness. I was unable to hold you in your first few minutes of life because being a mother then meant maintaining my own.

What it means to be your mother…

It means becoming a willing vessel from which you get your source of life. It means for at least a year, you used my body so yours could be sustained, maintained and thrive, regardless of energy, or nourishment, or sleep or wellbeing every calorie or vitamin my body possessed became yours…

2014-04-29 18.46.39It means I got to marvel at your fearlessness as each of you fought to ‘get on with life’ and crawl, walk, read, feed yourselves say your first word, hold a pencil, make friends I was grateful to get to see all these firsts. The desire and determination to move forward you showed, despite falling down so so many times taught me perseverance.

From you I learnt to laugh more and be more, iron less and sing more. From you I learnt to give myself permission to be ‘authentically me,’ I had to if I wanted you to learn how to be that for you too.

What it means to be your mother…

It means I got to comfort you when you were sad or the others were mean to you or left you out. I got to remind you how amazing you are and to hug you. It means I cheered from the sidelines (too loudly for you Jake I know!) of Netball and football matches with hot flasks and sandwiches in biting gales and with wet, soggy feet, but nevertheless feel my chest swell with immense pride at your efforts, win or lose.

girls-204323_150It means accepting your right to independence and that you don’t always need me. Making sure you didn’t see how sad I was that you no longer wanted to kiss me before you ran into school, or to have me drop you off, but go it alone on the bus…but at the same time being relieved and proud because it meant you were OK… you were finding your feet and becoming the wonderful you that you are today.

What it means to be your mother…

It means enduring your hatred when I wouldn’t let you do what you wanted to do. It means I had to be resolute, knowing that my duty to you was to do my best for you, do what’s right and that my obligation is to be your guide and that means I can’t always be your best friend.

heart-297313_150It means enduring the humiliation of having to receive a hand out in order to eat and having my heart pierced with Ice and break in to million tiny pieces as you look at me in disgust.

It means surviving… surviving so I could be some kind of a mother, knowing that no matter what you needed a mother, needed ME to be your mother, when it becomes life-threatening to mother you in the same space as you.

It means making choices… choices which mean either outcome is unbearable to contemplate, yet still having to make that choice and making one that you think will benefit your children the most, regardless of the outcome for myself.

What it means to be your mother

It means suffering the anguish of not being able to create holiday memories with you. It means being maligned and criticised and it means swallowing the painful lump of shame as potentially my children and others look at me and think “She’s obviously a bad mother!” without any knowledge of the reality..

There’s so much more I could say, so many examples of what it means to be your mother but I think for the sake of brevity I had best leave it here.

coast-631925_1280What it means to be your mother…

What it means to be your mother is to hold undying and unconditional love in my heart and mind for each of you until the breath leaves my body. It means I will always be your fiercest champion and tireless support.

It means I will advise you and encourage you to always do the right things even though there may be an easier way. It means being the best example of what it means to be human that I can be and to persist in this example for you no matter the consequence. It means being the template from which you fashion your suit, it means being the footsteps that went before and guiding you with a steady firm hand, but knowing when to let you go.

 In closing…

love-544408_1280It means learning to surrender my ego or needs and to learn to trust…both myself and my life’s process and in so doing come to learnt to trust the same thing for you. It means I was fearless when the reality was I was fearful. I means I had to learn to strike a balance between being lax and pleasing you for fear you wouldn’t like me anymore and setting boundaries and limits…firmly and I hope always with love, so that you could develop strong and straight

It means I did this and will continue to do this regardless of whether or not we see each other, whether or not you choose to talk to me, whether to not you think I did my best, whether or not you approve of my life choices, whether or not I’m rich enough, or pretty enough or whatever enough you think you need me to be for your approval.

It means that I love you

 It means I am your Mother

Blissings and much love always

 Ma x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *