Today is Mother's Day. My children are scattered far and wide but yet they still managed to call and let me know they loved me. It made my day. My youngest, Kat and her husband Brian are missionaries in Moldova and I just have to share her post today....it is thoughts like that that make a mother proud. Kat and Brian have no children of their own....nope....they parent...18 teenage girls. I have to admire her. Teenagers are the reason my hair is white today. My child and her husband may not parent children that grew under her heart....but they do parent children who grew in their hearts. What a great tribute to motherhood. Here is Kat's blog post for May 6th. I hope you enjoy it. I know I did.
Friday, May 6, 2016This Sunday is a special holiday in America. Its one that has always left me full of a variety of emotions. Its Mothers' Day. My friend, Leslie Word, has always been so amazing and supportive of all types of mothers on this day. Every year she has posted about all the different types of mothers that exist in this world....and I have felt so hesitant to believe what she wrote. I felt hesitant to step in to my own role as a "mother". The fact that I want to type it in quotes is evidence of the fact that I haven't felt like enough-not smart enough, not together enough, not good enough, not mother enough...I have feared judgement in allowing myself to say "I am a mother". I have feared what people will say or how they will react. I realized today that I bought in to the world's definition of what a mother is...and its a lie. I have negated anything that I have done because I don't have children that share my DNA or even my last name. I have felt that it might be pretentious to allow myself to be called mother. But, today...and this Mother's Day weekend....I am going to lean in to my role as mother (without quotations marks). I am NOT going to regale you all with the amazing things I do each day-that would be fiction. Because, I honestly fail miserably at this mothering thing most days. I just want to share my thoughts on the coming of my very first "Mother's Day" as a "mom". (OK-old habits die hard- the quotes make me feel safe). Please allow me the space and grace to call myself a mother if only for this weekend-I will try to allow myself the same space and grace.
If motherhood happened the same way we cook...I would be a microwave mother. I didn't have the long time to prepare and learn and read and dream- like a slow cooker. Nor, did I have just the average ole length of time with convection currents to make sure everything was just right before the timer went off.. No sir, God has a sense of humor. Overnight, I became a mother to 18 (actually 31) teenage girls and not just any teenage girls-Teenage girls who had spent most of their adolescence in state run orphanages. They are the most beautiful gifts I have ever been given- and I am terrified of messing up. I think that's normal for a mother. I just lean into God and say- I hope you have this God, because I have no idea what I am doing.
I have become obsessed with books about parenting adolescents, parenting the hurting child, the orphan's heart, and all the popular titles that help me learn how to do this in a good and Godly way. I crave time to myself...and yet miss them terribly when I have five minutes alone. A quiet house doesn't soothe my soul...it makes me wonder where they are and what they are up to:). I feel the weight of every single decision I make...I constantly ask myself---"how will this affect their future?". I am a microwave mom. It happened so quick...but so full of God's presence. It was like overnight God gave me this magical ability to see truth, see beauty, see needs, and recognize when someone is being less than truthful:)
I am not their mother by DNA or by any legal documents. They don't call me mom. By the world's standards, I am no mother. But, I still have the daily responsibilities of a mother. To love them, guide them, provide for them, comfort them when life throws curveballs (which the teenage years are wrought with curve balls). What an honor it is to have this role...even if I'm not a proper "mom". I am thankful to the women who gave them life, and to the women who sustained them until this point....and to the women who continue to pour into their lives....it really does take a village....and honestly...there is no such thing as "my" children or "your" children....They are all our children...and our decisions matter to all of "OUR" children in this world---no matter if you are a microwave mom or not. This is not the way I imagined I would come in to "motherhood"...not at all....but I cannot imagine being anywhere else....of course as I type this ode to my dear ones and the role they have given me...the music is getting louder and the voices are disagreeing on the style of music...because...struggles:) I love this family of mine....who call me by one name- Kathryn. Just Kathryn---but oh it sounds lovely and like so much more than just "Kathryn" coming from these voices of the ones I hold dear.
Happy Mother's Day to me....what a privilege it is to be a mother to these loud and beautiful and emotional and crazy brilliant girls!!!