i am a mama.  this is a huge part of who i am.  while i view myself in various ways – woman, wife, friend, daughter, sister – and while i have plenty of passions – art, writing, hiking, yoga – each morning i rise from the previous night’s slumber as mama.  it’s a natural way of being for me…it is my daily work.  and, side by side with my husband, parenting brings me great joy. 

the other day i journaled about what it means to be a mama.  i generated long lists of words that sprang to mind as i considered the word mama…a list of verbs, a list of nouns, a list of adjectives.  i considered working through the eight parts of speech, but stopped with these three.

i was most struck by the dualism of my notations.  i hug and kiss daily…i receive hugs and kisses daily.  i make rules and set boundaries…i encourage freedom and exploration.  i do laundry…i create laundry that needs doing.  i play…i set tasks.  i speak of truths to my children…i listen to the truths of my children.  i lead…i also follow.

life is full of dualism.  this brings balance, no?  while i might wish for happiness every day…would i really know the true expanse of happiness if i did not also know the depths of sadness?  one necessarily informs the other.

so while i teach my children various things, i also allow space for them to teach me.  and while i mediate a fair share of arguments, i also attempt to allow them to navigate the waters of conflict.  and while being a mama means protecting my children, it also means allowing for and encouraging growth, self-knowledge, and passion so that one day they will be strong and healthy adults…out in the world beyond the enfolding walls of our present home, beyond my enfolding arms…

i am a mama.  it will always inform my life.  some of the nouns and verbs on my list may change as the pages of the calendar turn.  i will not homeschool my children for the rest of their lives, i will not do their laundry for the rest of their lives.  i will release those items from my list.  but some items will remain…giver of love, confidante, supporter…and, yes, protector.

sending a little love your way, m

2 thoughts on “mama


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