Saturday, May 7, 2016

Motherhood my Saving Grace

I was truly terrified to be a mother. I was convinced I would mess it up, and badly.

I was sure this perfect, soft, innocent being would be crushed under the weight of the baggage I brought with me. Baggage I had been carrying for such a long time, I knew how it could break a heart in two. I could not even bear the thought of it. I cried many times during my first pregnancy, wept for what might be, grieved for horrible mistakes I felt I was destined to make.

I felt fated. I could not see myself. I was wounded, applying pressure to a ruptured heart, stumbling in the dark trying to find some light. My self image was projected through a warped fun house mirror in the deep layers of consciousness, distorted, a self seen through a dark lens, a prism of pain, a filter of fear.

How could someone like me, such a mess, possibly care for a child?

 I was married, my husband saw me through a loving lens. I had stability and security. He did his best to soothe my fear. He assured me that I would be a great mom, being the kind and loving person he knew me to be. And yes, I could sense a well of love and care, maybe even the loud roar of an ocean of it somewhere in me, like a hidden kingdom in my heart, waiting.

We had a beautiful baby boy.

Seventeen years have come and gone since then. I have four children now, they are my saving grace. Each one has come, unique and perfect. I have given my best to them, and they have no less than rescued me. They awakened that ocean of love that lives in me, they delivered me to the kingdom of my own powerful heart. I see my true self, my best self, when I look in their eyes.

It's like in fairy tales, when a curse can only be broken by true love's kiss. My husband and children, this tribe of family, breathed life back into me. I was only half alive, in my inner darkness, reaching out, and they crashed through dungeon walls, light came flooding in.

When I talk about my belief in the power of love, and the reality of grace, I am not just waxing poetic. I know it is true, because it happened to me.

Even now, when I get to feeling lost, with no direction, or when my spirit is bruised by the world, at the edge of breaking, I look at my children's faces and I am restored to hope. In them I see clearly what is real and true, what stands any test, what prevails no matter the difficulty, and it is love.

We have our ups and downs. We fight, we are not always kind, we make mistakes, but there is always forgiveness in the end. We stand up and alongside each other, we stay the course, we never leave anyone behind or out in the cold. My kids brought out a fierce love in me, a strong protectress, a warrior of the heart. I see their warrior nature too. They all are willing to fight the good fight, that makes me proud. We are in this life together come hell or high water. We rescue each other when trouble comes. We celebrate together, milestones, achievements, and often just because...we have each other and that is cause for celebration.

These children, this family, are the greatest gift, and as much as I have guided, nurtured and supported their becoming, they also opened the door for my becoming. With them I am more than I ever thought I could possibly be.