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To The Mother In You

I struggle to keep up with weekly blogging, let alone two blogs in one week! I’m

A recovering perfectionist and the idea of posting a short blog I haven’t chewed up and edited multiple times still brings me chills. It’s mothers day and I’m meant to be busy doing nothing, being pampered, modern culture has made me believe. I’m not at home nor do I have my laptop on me. This Wix app is glitching.

The above are a few of the many reasons this blog shouldn’t have materialized.

So what’s the deal with this impromptu decision to vomit out some unruly thoughts and share with you guys? How was this Mother’s Day post born into existence? (Pun intended)

It started with a Mother’s Day text. Yeah yeah yeah. One of the kinds that one friend who waits for a holiday to add your name to a long list of recipients and sends you a publicly circulating photo in what seems like an effort to cross it off their list of to-dos. I had already received a few of those today. But this one stopped me dead in my tracks. It was from a woman who’s a member of my extended family. She also isn’t able to have children.

Me placing myself in her shoes was instantaneous. This woman lost her husband not too long ago after tirelessly caring for him as he fought a terminal condition that he eventually succumbed to. Living as Ethiopian diasporas, she weathered the storm of medical bills, multiple jobs and hospital stays while showing him decision and love like I’ve never seen before. And you mow how his family in Ethiopia showed their gratitude? By suing her for whatever she may be worth, in an attempt to enrich themselves because, you guessed it, she isn’t a mother. One guy called her a ‘mule’ in an effort to convince me to testify in court about the assets she may have built with her late husband. Which I refused to do.

I received another personal well wish from a first time pregnant woman who is facing the definite near future of raising her baby by herself. I was stopped dead in my tracks this time too. Is she a mother already or one in the making? Do I say “thank you?” or also add “you too” to my reply?

I then thought about a close family member who is desperately trying to conceive. One I started trying to help prepare to the possibility of adopting a child because nature doesn’t seem to be cooperating. She is the most giving and kind hearted person I know. It’s not fair, I thought. She’s as motherly as any human being comes. So will she not feel like she deserves that description because biology isn’t on her side? Is motherhood really this annoyingly simple?

Then I started thinking about how we define it. What is the qualification? A sperm cell fertilizing an egg? A fetus being pushed out? Who gets to own it?

We call the earth ‘our mother’

Mother Nature is an accepted terminology we use commonly. Why?

I have arrived at this conclusion. Anyone with the power to create, co-create, nurture, heal, provide, support, a mother.

Yes. If you do any or all of the above, you ARE a mother.

Motherhood, as much as our egos depend on titles and identifying objects and roles, mustn’t be boxed as such. It’s too grand of a concept and not a mere definition that applies to a collection of women who check certain boxes. It’s an energy. One that brings forth into existence things which otherwise will only be limited to a scene in one’s imagination. It’s a mighty creative force inclined to nurture and support that which it ushers into the physical realm.

My relative, the woman who cared for her dying husband and immortalized unconditional love in the hearts of those who were able to witness it, she channeled the energy of motherhood although she’s never carried a baby to term nor attended PTA meetings. My friend is a mother even if she hasn’t held her baby in her arms yet. She knows what it is like to connect with an unseen pull of love, knows how to put someone else first. She’s a mother by all means.

The woman who dreams of conceiving is a mother weather or not the pee stick has two lines. She has mastered the yearning to nurture, to have faith in something not yet experienced. That’s what the energy of motherhood enables.

A mother is anyone who’s found it in herself to love, even when in doing so, she may experience discomfort.

May we celebrate motherhood not from an angle of definitional identity but from

mindfully recognizing the magnificent energy of love it that it is. Let’s pass that message around, shall we?

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