Mamahood Exposed: Strength Given

7.3.12

Starting this series has been a wonderful adventure.  I have had the privilege and the honor to read and share some of the best stories from all kinds of Mamas.  Here's one recent submission from Christina that completely gripped me.



6lbs and 9oz. lookin' up at me
Like I have all the answers
I hope I have the ones you need
I've never really done this,

Now I know what scared is

The moment she was placed in my arms I knew I had a fighter on my hands. My entire pregnancy with her had been difficult, emotionally and physically. Even during her delivery I knew she would be stubborn. It was hours of painful labor, hours of not knowing if she was safe. She was so drastically different from her brother. Brandon was such an easy and quick birth. Even afterwards he slept peacefully.

She didn't. She was constantly alert, constantly investigating and constantly testing me. Her will was as strong as mine...even as a baby. I knew I had met my match. At the same time, there was such a deep innocence, such a deep need. She has always been my rock; it’s hard to understand that while she has been my constant little thing, I've been her's as well. She sees not my faults, but my strengths. She relies on me for everything; for faith, trust and love and to show her to her path in life. And for someone still stumbling on her own path, knowing that I am going to be the one giving her the answers she seeks...is frightening beyond comprehension.



Sometimes I'll protect you from everything that's wrong
Other times I'll let you just find out on your own
But that's when you'll be growin',
And the whole time I'll be knowin

You're gonna fly with every dream you chase
You're gonna cry, but know that that's okay
Sometimes life's not fair, but if you hang in there
You're gonna see that sometimes bad is good
We just have to believe things work out like they should
Life has no guarantees, but always loved by me
You're gonna be

I never truly realized how much of a gamble motherhood can be. And I never realized the chances my mother took with me. How did she know when to let me make my own mistakes and when to save me from myself? Did she do right? Did she do wrong? The only one that can answer that is myself. How I chose to learn from those mistakes and how I grew from them is the only way to answer her sacrifices and her decisions. Knowing the lessons I had to learn through pain and self destruction, did she save me from something worse? What will I save Sami from? When do I let her fly, and when do I let her fall? I hope she can learn from my sins and my mistakes. I hope she never has to experience the pain I experienced. Yet I hope she does have some pain, because in that trial of fire she will be reborn within herself. Her soul will be tempered and herself worth will be proven. But letting go, knowing that I will have to let her heart be broken, I will have to let her feel that she is the only one to make decisions...is one of the most painful steps I will ever take as a mother.

She has a game she loves to play. I will be sitting here in the desk chair doing various things, and she will be sitting quietly on my bed coloring or playing with her dolls. All of a sudden, without much of a warning aside from that mischievous grin that plays across her face and that excited glint in her eyes, she will throw herself through the air towards me. And in her heart, in her mind she knows my arms will always be there to catch her, to save her from a fall and from pain, to pull her to my heart where she will wrap her arms around me, press her cheek against my heart sigh and say “I love you Mommy”. It is trust as it’s most basic. It is love and blind faith in my ability to foresee her needs and to be strong enough to catch her in her free fall. In ten years, will I still be there to capture her? Will she one day have to miss my arms to learn to fly with her own wings?


I'm afraid you'll have to suffer through
some of my mistakes
Lord knows I'll be trying to give you what it takes
What it takes to know the difference
Between getting by and livin'

Cause anything worth doing is worth doing all the way
Just know you'll have to live with all
the choices that you make
So make sure you're always givin' way
more than you're takin'

We rarely think at the age of sixteen or even twenty, how our actions will affect others. Let alone how it will affect the future and our unborn children.  I never realized that my decision to place Matthew for adoption would affect me as greatly as it has and those around me. What will I say when Sami asks why I gave up her brother?  How can I admit to my own child that at the time, I was not capable of being the mother he deserved? Will she question if I was ready when she came along? Throughout all of the tumult of her life, will she ask me why I didn’t give her a better chance?

I pray so much that my past, my lessons and my mistakes will be learning blocks for her.  When she is 16 and swept up in the excitement of first love, will she be able to see the pain I went through at that age because of my decisions? My own mother was a mother in her teens; I always thought I would be better than that. I didn’t realize that it’s not better or worse. It’s how I handle the situation. I took a different path than my mother.  And for me, I think it was the best path.
But now life has shifted, I'm a mother with a daughter of my own. What kind of advice would I give her? Would I tell her of the pain I experienced? The pain and trauma I dealt with as I held my child for the first and last time? Or will I just have to let her fly? Let her test her wings and fly or fall...
Something I struggled with for years was truly experiencing life. I always felt the only thing you could do was just get though life. It is still something I struggle with daily. Something my therapist has tried to drill into my thick skull, is that I’ve got to step back and enjoy life. I try too much to juggle everything myself. Personal issues, personal pain and personal decisions were the balls I was desperate to keep in the air by myself. I need to learn to step back and savor everything. What I have accomplished, what gifts I have in life. I need to relish in the good... I need to, after 28 years...live life.  I hate that I don’t do that as much as I really should. And I worry what sort of message it sends to Sami. Life is too short to be stressed out all the time.

When she was barely a year old, I had to make one of the biggest decisions of her young life. Do I stay in a situation where I was unhappy and unsafe but where she was in a situation that was comfortable and normal for her or do I shake up her entire life, change every aspect of it, for my own sanity? Her second year of life was in upheaval. I moved us to a new state. I left the man that gave her her last name. I would question my choices every day. As I walked 4 miles from work  in the Texas summer heat,  because I couldn't afford a car, I would question..is this what she deserves? Is this really the best thing for her? When I would sit down after payday and look at the paltry amount of money I had to feed and clothe her, I worried if I would be able to afford to get ahead in life. 
But I did. Slowly, but surely I worked hard to give her everything she needed. And I realized that I was giving her the best gift ever. A role model. A woman that loved herself and believed in herself enough to know when to stand up for herself and when to fight. I chose safety and happiness over false security. I chose to save my life in order to save her future. 
My push to survive was taking its toll, mentally, physically and emotionally. I needed to be able to enjoy Sami’s youth.I needed to relax, but learning to relax is one of the hardest lessons you will learn in life She is the gift I’ve struggled with accepting. It is Life's way of telling me to slow down and to enjoy what I have.
My mother struggled so much during my formative years. To provide for me and my brothers, to deal with her personal demons and to try to create a family with so much dysfunction we were falling apart at the seams. For so many years I blamed her. For my pain and my anger...and while she was not innocent of all crimes...A lot of the stress, was because I was already struggling so much with enjoying life. I was struggling with accepting someone’s love. Looking back I realize that she truly did love me in her own way. I was just too stubborn and too confused to understand and accept it and she was too lost to show it in the healthiest way. Sami deserves better than that, I have to remember to give her that.

What am I giving Sami? Can I be that loving, easy-going, laid back mother I always wanted growing up? Or will I let my frustration, anger and stress and feelings of inadequacies win over?


You’re gonna Be.
Someone's everything
You're gonna see
Just what you are to me

You're gonna fly with every dream you chase
We just have to believe things work out like they should
Life has no guarantees, but always loved by me
You're gonna be
Always loved by me

I’ve got to show her what she truly is to me. I always struggled with knowing if my parents loved me or not. Not because they never said it...not because they were neglectful, but because for some reason...I could never truly accept that someone could love me. Because it was so easy to let their anger and pain hit me to the core.   I want better than that with her. I want her to feel loved and supported in everything. I want her to be able to chase and have dreams. And to know that I will always be there for her. 

Life shows itself in the oddest places.  A friendly neighbor who watches out for you; a friend that calls out of the blue or a card on a day where everything seems to be falling apart are all signs we tend to overlook. She is more than a child to me. She is more than a point of frustration. She is a sign from Life that I am capable of giving her everything. She is a gift to show me the true blessings in life....and she is my greatest test. And for all of that...I will forever be in debt to her. I just hope I can pay her back for a portion of the strength she has given to me, and the lessons she has taught me.

0 thoughts:

Post a Comment

Let me know your thoughts!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

ModaMama All rights reserved © Blog Milk Powered by Blogger