I wonder if the weight of motherhood will ever feel less heavy. I don't mean heavy in a negative way, but rather, a weight I continue to carry and be brightly aware of. It's like a necklace I wear around my neck; deeply precious to me and constantly moving, swinging in this way that makes sure I never forget it's there. It's a feeling I have become so accustomed to in these short 6 years. So much so that I can't remember if there was ever a time before it.
And that's OK. This doesn't mean I've forgotten who that spunky 23 year old was. The one who loved to shop and stay up late drinking wine and talking to her roommates. It just means she's laying underneath layers of growth, confidence and dare I say... wisdom.
Yes, being a mother makes you wiser. It is not wise in a way that takes away from childless women, it is a wisdom that comes when you give yourself up for someone else. This is an experience that can happen in many forms. I don't mean to say it is only through motherhood that we experience this selflessness, but for me, this was the case.
This weight of motherhood is so much so that sometimes I find myself in tears. It's just too much. Too much love, too much sweat, too much exhaustion, too many sweet hugs, too many loads of laundry and dinners to make. It's hard to understand sometimes, hard to put into words, the feelings I have as a mother.
But truly beautiful things are often hard to explain; you can only experience them.
...but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. (1 Corinthians 13:10-12)
What is in part disappears. Before my children came into my life, I was not complete. I was a part, not fully formed. Now, in my completeness, I am stronger. Everything is clearer and that reflection has been made real. My role as a mother stares me straight in the face. It's constant presence now takes on my whole being and the best way I can describe it is as a covering. It is a blanket of warmth and strength that screams for me to be vulnerable and flexible.
Motherhood is a glimpse of that completeness we feel when we accept Jesus into our lives.
This morning as I got ready for work, the room still dark and my 3 year old son laying in bed next to my husband, I heard his small sweet voice say, "mama, you are so beautiful." And just like that, my heart grew and broke all at once.
Because this journey of motherhood is about constantly giving of yourself, each day; growing your heart, bigger and bigger until that moment when your child gives you something back. A word, a phrase, a hug of their own volition, and you are reminded of your own humanity, of how you need this relationship too.