Mothers have innate capacity. This space inside them set apart exclusively for nourishing new life. And from the second that life appears on scene, we moms start expanding. Bellies push out involuntarily into these round bumps. Blood volume increases and fat stores plump up. And along with that our hearts grow too. Emotions and instincts we never knew we had start to surface; bubble over the edge, unconfined by even our best efforts to organize all of the extra meaning our life is about to take on.
And then all of the sudden, a baby arrives in our arms overnight. And with glittering eyes we just look at them. This helpless bundle, a tiny person we are responsible for. Through pregnancy our bodies are pushed to the limit of expansion. When we reach physical capacity, the tears and scars leave their marks. And our hearts take on the overflow.
That’s when a woman really becomes a mother; when something deep inside her soul stretches beyond what she thought possible to make room for all the extra that comes with the territory. The things no book prepares you for.
The fear. The exhaustion. The guilt.
The joy. The wonder. The pride.
The sacrifice. The pain. The heartache.
A chasm exists inside every mother. It gets bigger with each day as we stuff more of motherhood into it. Because we need a spot for all the substance. For the exhaustion of those first few months when we never knew it was possible to be so incredibly tired. A place to store up those moments when we just stop and watch them, engraving their perfect faces into our minds forever. A place to put the gut-wrenching guilt when we know we let them down. A spot for the questions, the uncertainties, and the delights.
And when we finally process it all and begin to make sense of the clutter, we see our hearts, so much bigger than when we started. Stunning capacity. Of all the creations in this world, it is perhaps mothers who possess the greatest capacity for love.
The weight of our roles rest heavily on our shoulders. The pressure to love, to protect, to care for intrinsically apart of our makeup the second that child arrives. Its inescapable. And for many, filling that enormous capacity with the realities of love is crushing. A task so daunting, with the potential for utter failure running incredibly high. For many motherhood is not what we decided, or what we dreamt of, or maybe even wanted. And often, we feel inept. We feel ill-equipped. We feel like we are letting them down.
Because all we really want for Mother’s Day is to be good at this. To feel like we have finally arrived. That we are big enough to handle it all.
But today, my friends, we are not inept. We are not broken. We are not an empty space, waiting to be filled with the next round of life.
We are the chosen.
At some point in time, out of all the women in the world, God chose you to be their one. A perfect match in an imperfect world. A role no one else in the entire history of humanity will ever get play. You had no choice in the matter, but you were unmistakably chosen for it.This weekend, mothers are celebrated. Mothers are recognized. But today remember that you are not just someone’s mom. You are chosen.