I know that I don’t yet have kids of my own but I do have an imagination. And with all the nephews and nieces I have in my life I have a pretty good picture that when the day finally comes when some little kiddos are mine…I’m gonna be a fierce mama!
I am going to want the absolute best for my kids. I want them to have the best education, be active in music and sports or activities. I will cook them healthy and nutritious foods. I will growl at bullies on the playground that would threaten the fragile identity development of my child. I know that every parent says it, but my kids will know it that Mama knows best. And when I require helmets and knee pads for tree climbing sessions there will be no wavering or doubt because they know: Mama knows best.
Now, I don’t need an imagination for this model of mothering. I have had an incredible mom and model that has raised me well.
I don’t have too many childhood memories absent of my mom. I remember standing next to her side in the kitchen with my own apron on as I would help her prepare a meal or bake cookies. I remember having monthly themed decorations on the walls in the kitchen so we could learn about the solar system, animals, history as we would enjoy our meals together. My mom drove countless hours back and forth from school to home to fields or courts or gyms for our sports and activities. She was a fixture in my classrooms, Sunday school classes and campfire clubs where she volunteered and served. My friends knew her, loved her, and felt very loved by her. My mom thought it best to teach her country bumpkin daughters how to walk down the street like a bad a$$ and make sure no one would try to mess with us, y’know, just in case we ever found ourselves on the big bad streets of a city or college campus :) While she also taught us how to sit like a lady and proper etiquette for tea parties. My mom was a force.
And when I think that someday I would have a child that is all mine to love and raise I think of a LOOoooonnnnng list of things that I need to make sure that I do, so that I have the best child possible and I am in contention for the Best Mom Ever award.
That last bit was just a joke :) unless there really is an award like that…
Today I think about my mom as she celebrates her birthday and I am immediately reminded of one of the greatest gifts that my mom gave me. And the older I get and the more the desire for motherhood is embedded in my heart I glimpse the cost of this gift.
My mom is fierce. She is protector, teacher, disciplinarian, comforter, safety zone, creator, cheerleader (no seriously, she was actually a cheerleader…she never understood why her daughters sought out sports that had us slide-tackling and hip checking people) wife, sister, daughter, friend. She is master of her domain.
And she gave it all up.
She has created these kids (Dad you will get your credit when March rolls around for your birthday), she has created their home, their world. And she saw that it wasn’t enough. Her love, her protection, her plans were never going to be enough for us.
And that is why in her humility of spirit she acknowledged where her role of mother ends and where the great and awesomeness of God begins. That for her daughters to truly be safe, secure, protected we needed to be before our God, Creator and Savior.
My mom introduced me to Jesus. And she has remained faithful in the battle to trust me to His hands. I know that it’s been hard. She has wanted to rescue, protect, advise a daughter that has a strong and independent personality. To stifle that feeling of Mama Knows Best…whew! That takes a strong woman! And she has rescued, jumped in, inserted advice, panicked and protected – and I’m thankful for her heart to show me love. But she has also given me the example of her humility that has told me, “That wasn’t the right move. You needed to fall. You needed Jesus.”
We are kids, we grow up, we scrap our knees and touch hot surfaces and get our hearts broken and it must be agonizing to watch as a parent. But the lessons that are learned from the pain, the bumps and bruises, teach us and mature us. We can’t live in the mama bubble our whole life (well let’s be honest we could probably identify one person in our life who is obnoxiously unaware they are still bubblefied with their mom!)
The greatest gift that my mom gave me was Jesus. She pointed me to God and trusted me in His hands and purposes. And Mom…I’m so thankful.
Happy Birthday to one fierce mama, whom I love and deeply respect! Have a stinkin fantastic day to be celebrated by all of your friends near and far that love you!