The long awaited day had finally arrived. It was months in the planning. Everything needed to be just right. I spent hours searching online, for the perfect decorations, and yummy food for a couple’s bridal shower, well not a just a couples shower, but two couples showers.
I was standing in my kitchen talking to a sweet friend, who had come to give a devotional for the young couples. She was commenting on how beautiful everything was, and how wonderful the food turned out. She said,” you are amazing! I can’t believe you did all of this!” That is when it hit me, how do you stop a mom? But we’ll come back to that in a minute.
What made my friend think I was so amazing? Well, six weeks earlier I was riding bicycles with my boys. My oldest son was training for the MS150, a 150-mile ride from Houston, Texas to Austin, Texas to raise money for Multiple Sclerosis. So he, my youngest son, and I set out to go for a ride. As soon as we got to the trail my oldest son took off. The big ride was going to happen soon, and he needed to train. So my youngest son and I ambled from one park to another enjoying our ride and time together. I thought I was so clever. I attached my phone to the front of my bike with Velcro, so that I could track my fitness, and control my music.
It was a beautiful day, and we were on a trail in the middle of the woods, that runs along a creek side. When all of a sudden around the 15-mile mark, my phone started to slip out of the Velcro, and my headphones were yanked out of my ears. I was afraid that they would get caught in the tire, and make me wreck. So without thinking I reached for my phone with my right hand, and I squeezed the front break with my left hand, and came to a screeching halt! I was catapulted straight over the top of the handlebars, and without thinking, I put my hands out to brace my fall, and snapped both of my arms.
My left arm was nearly a compound fracture, and both my Ulna and Radius were broken. Fortunately, I only broke the Radius in my right arm, but that meant that I had two broken arms, and needed surgery to repair them. I had three plates and twenty screws inserted into my forearms. My surgeon said it could take three months to a year for me to heal. Three months to a year? What? What did he just say?
At my follow up appointment, two weeks after surgery I asked him, “How soon I can drive?” and he just laughed at me. I am a busy wife, and mom. I have a husband and three boys. My oldest son is in college, but still lives at home. His friends are always coming to the house. So between my boys who seem to have hollow legs, and their friends, it seems like I am always cooking. My middle son has special needs, and that makes for some interesting challenges in our home. I homeschool him along my youngest son. He does competitive speech and debate, and so my spring is usually crazy busy, even crazier than our normal crazy life. Between trying to find quiet time to study God’s word, exercise, manage my home, and be attentive to my husband, traveling every couple of weeks to attend tournaments that last for several long, grueling days. And piles and piles of laundry to wash, fold, and put away. If you are a mom, than you know the drill. Someone is always vying for our attention, needs something, or we just run from one activity with our kids to the next.
Which brings me back to that question. That question, that struck me so profound, that I couldn’t get it out of head. As I was standing in the kitchen talking to my friend, and she was saying I cant believe you did all of this, with two broken arms!
I simply replied, “ How do you stop a mom?”
How do you stop a mom? From the time we give birth, until the day we die. We are on duty 24/7. We are mothers, and it doesn’t matter what your motherhood looks like. If you are a single mother, a working mother, your children go to school, or they are grown, and have families of their own. A mother is ALWAYS a mom. So, how does a woman stop caring for her family, when she has both of her arms broken? She does not. Or how does a mom stop showing love to her family, when she is going through chemo, she cant. Or what about when she is overwhelmed by the duties of caring for babies, and toddlers, and is in need of encouragement, or worse, because she lives under a dark cloud of depression?
I don’t know where you are in your motherhood journey. I don’t know what being a mom looks like to you. Whether you have 10 children or you have only 1. But what I do know is that, Motherhood matters. Motherhood is the highest, and most important calling that we have in our lives as women. The kind of mom we are, how we shape our children’s hearts, what we believe in and what we believe about ourselves, all of those matter!
In the English Standard Version of the bible, Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, what ever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” As moms we need to take our thoughts captive, and dwell on things that are lovely, and excellent, and true. We need to be reminded that God loves us all, and in all the seasons of our lives, and that he cares for us.
I have spent a lot of time thinking about motherhood, and what it means to be a mom? And how do you stop a mom? I look at the friends in my life that are mothers, and I see both the joys and the struggles that they face and the influence that they have in their children’s lives. I have spent many hours morning the loss of both my mom, and my mother-in-law who have both gone on to be with the Lord in recent years. Both of these women made a huge impact on my life, and have shaped me to be the mom I am today. All of the positive qualities and characteristics that helped to shape me as a girl, a young woman and a mom coupled with the negative traits, or sin that still impacts me today, live on in both my memory and my actions and transcend the grave. What was important to them and the example that they were and still are to me speaks volumes of the kind mom I want to be, and the legacy that I want to leave my children with. So remember that you have a noble and worthy calling as Mom, and that what you do today matters, and can have implications that last more than a lifetime.