My momma was only 21 when she lost her mom. That was 31 years ago today. Even as a little girl, I had some sense that being a Mom without a Mom must be hard. My Momma never said much about it, but every now and then she’d simply say, “wish my Mom could have seen this …”
Everybody needs their Mom.
My grandmother birthed 10 children and ironed clothes for a living. She was country when country was all there was. She knew about the hardest things in life – not just hard work and raising babies, but burying babies far too soon, loving a man when he was acting like a boy, and stretching every last dollar from week to week just to put food on the table. Her life was the kind of stuff Loretta sang about. I have a picture of her on a bookshelf in my house that my Momma gave me. There is something about this picture of a young woman all dressed up and standing on a dirt road that fills my heart up. It gives me strength in moments of weakness, makes me want to stand taller and feel proud that her blood runs through mine.
The strength my grandmother carried is like a gift she continually gives me – just looking at her picture reminds me that there’s just nothing like a mother. Mom’s have a fierce ability to love, nurture, and protect their children. We just do what we gotta do, whatever that looks like.
Our youngest son, Kellen, was six weeks old when I knew that his colic wasn’t just colic. When our pediatrician confirmed that he had an allergy to dairy and soy, we knew life was about to get interesting. I had been able to nurse our oldest son, Brody, for a solid year even after going back to work full time. I wanted desperately to do the same for Kellen. It meant a huge change in my diet – especially for this carb lover : ). Somehow, the desire and will came to me and I was able to eat just the right foods and Kellen managed to have the same benefit as Brody in nursing for his first year. Let me say that I know breastfeeding is not everyone’s choice, and there is no judgement from me as a mother for my friends and family (or you, my reader friend). That was just a conviction of mine and although I struggled to change my daily diet for my own self, doing it for my baby was easy and I would do it again in a heartbeat. It’s that mothering instinct. The kind that will keep you up on the couch until your babies are home even when they’re nearing 18 or 20. It’s the kind of strength that pulls you out of bed in the middle of the night tending to a sick little person who needs no other soul in that moment but you, Momma.
There’s something we all need to know and believe – God has equipped us to be everything they’re gonna need. Our kids will grow up remembering the sound of our laugh, the softness in our hands, the sound of our voice – because we are theirs and they don’t want anyone but us. They are aware that only their mom can love them and care for them with a mighty strength. So just love. Be who you are. Laugh on the tough days. Cry in the sad moments and even some of the happy ones.
And when you feel like you just can’t make it, or your weariness turns to doubt, call your Momma. She will remind you of who you are, where you came from, and what you’re capable of; she’ll be your strength.
I am not sure who my sweet Momma called in those moments since her Mom was gone, but something tells me a picture, or a memory was enough to keep her going. Whatever it was, I am grateful that she is here to get me through when I feel like I just can’t. And I pray I can do the same someday for these little men I am raising. I’ll just teach them to call home whenever they need something.
Everybody needs their Mom.
Do you call on your Mom when you need extra strength to make it through the day? How does she make you feel stronger?