To The Mamas...

I originally wrote this post in 2016, but thought it was worth adding to for this year...Enjoy!

In honor of Mother's Day this weekend, I thought I would pop in and share some words and photographs celebrating motherhood.

To the mamas: 

I see you. I see the tears in your eye as they lay your brand new baby on your chest for the first time. The way you know in your heart that life has changed forever for the better.

I see you fall to your knees when you finally receive that anticipated phone call. The way you skip a breath when you open up that email to see that first, long-awaited photo of your child. The child whose eyes and hair might differ from your own but whose soul has lived in your heart for eternity. 

I see the strain in your eyes when you have yet to sleep in over 36 hours. Or for more than 2 hours in a row in months. I see you zoning out in a lovely day dream involving a hotel bed and 12 hours of holy, uninterrupted sleep. 

I see your gentle touches, comforting embraces and hushed songs. I see you bouncing, bouncing, forever bouncing, even when the baby isn't in your arms. 

I see you being peed on, pooped on, spit up on and thrown up on. I see you rushing through that hot shower to attend to the crying baby. I see you focusing on the good, smiling still. 

I see you setting the pause button on some of your own dreams in order to be more available to your family. I see you saying no to some really good things in order to save your best yeses. 

I see you being screamed at by your two-year-old for cutting his sandwich into squares and not triangles. I see you respond in love.

And on the days when if feels like the walls are caving in and you do lose your cool, I see you crouching down to his level, looking him in the eye and saying "I'm sorry. Mommy messed up. Will you forgive me?"

I see the thousands of packed lunches. The rushing from that work meeting to make the first whistle of the soccer game. The third cup of coffee to try to stay awake during homework after being up all night with the baby. 

I see you when your child tells you something extraordinary that proves they really WERE listening. That they DO remember that conversation you had with them about kindness, generosity, or contentment. 

I see the spark of pride in your eye when your child hits a milestone for the first time. The first giggle, the first time grasping a toy, the first time eating solids, the first time riding a two-wheeler, the first time stepping up on to the big scary school bus or the first time they make a new friend. 

I see your child delight in you. I see her mimic you and repeat you and walk in your high heels. 

I see you fight for your child. You are her greatest cheerleader and biggest advocate. 

I see you cursing Pinterest at 1am for the failed birthday party craft. I see you salvage it, all for the love for your child and his adoration of Paw Patrol. 

I see you kissing boo boos, applying ointment, administering ice packs and making everything all better. 

I see you memorializing the mundane - making the ordinary Tuesday evening special when you declare it "national eat pancakes for dinner day" (a holiday you really just made up in your head). 

I see you in the midst of tough decisions, crying out to God to help you act wisely on behalf of your child. 

I see you struggle with your own medical challenges. The diagnosis. The hidden medications. The scary words you don't want your child to hear. You don't want to be "sick" mom. You just want to be "mom". Guess what? I'm pretty sure that you are the only mom your kid would ever want. They are blessed to have a mom that is a warrior.

I see you grandmamas, who are now watching your "baby" transform into a mother. I see your love multiply as you see another generation being raised up. I see you bite your tongue, wanting so badly to give your two cents but remembering how you wanted to find your own way as a new mom, too. I now see the beautiful sacrifices you made in mothering us, we appreciate you. 

To the women who long for motherhood. I see you. The waiting month after month. Tracking cycles, praying and wishing and hoping with all your might for that plus sign on the test to magically appear after the longest two minutes of your life. To the worry. To the disappointment. To the endless rollercoaster of hormones and cycles and shots. I know how much it stings when you receive yet another invitation to a baby shower or gender reveal. I know that you ask "when will it be my turn?"

To the women grieving losses. I see you. I see the ache in your heart. I pray that you know the loving Father and his gracious healing. 

To the women who don't know if motherhood is even in the cards, I leave you with these beautiful words from Gloria Furman in her book titled, Missional Motherhood

"Mothering (or nuturing) is a calling not just for women who have biological or adopted children. Mothering is a calling for all women. Every Christian woman is called to the spiritual motherhood of making disciples of all nations. Our nurturing is, by nature, missional."

From my mama heart to yours, Happy Mother's Day!