Sunday, January 20, 2013
The Nobility of Motherhood
Since when did it become a "little thing" to be a mother? One of the blog posts I read this week involved a SAHM having trouble filling out employment sections of applications. (I don't know if this was an application for employment, college, sweepstakes, or whatever.) What do you put when it comes to "most recent job"? Many commenters offered suggestions of which most had corporate-sounding names: "COO - Chief Operating Officer of the X-Family", and others like that. My issue is not with the blogger or with the commenters. The titles chosen, if applied in the outside world, would accurately reflect the duties performed by the person in question. I support my "sisters", be they single or married, with kids or not, working outside the home or not. My beef is with whomever decided that being a woman, wife, mother was "not enough".
Some years ago, an young woman found out she was pregnant. Her fiance knew the child was not his, biologically, but chose to stand by the young woman. (BTW, how cool is THAT?) When she was in labor, the local hospital maternity ward was overflowing and she had to give birth in a ... less than antiseptic location. Word got around, and many people brought the new mom and little baby boy gifts due to the unusual way in which he was brought into the world.
A short time after that, the "father" came in and said, "Honey, we gotta move...like now." Still recovering from childbirth, the new mom was probably less than thrilled. "We're going WHERE? WHEN? That's not really an ideal neighborhood...." Well, the long and the short of it was, they went. A couple of years later, they were able to return to their old neighborhood.
When the boy was 12, he disappeared on a shopping trip. The parents went out of their minds with worry. And where did they find him? In a room full of old men! These days, the police would probably run background checks on all the old guys, to make sure none of them had criminal records. But this was another day, another time. Turns out all that happened was some rather educational discussions.
This boy went on to be many things to many people. On his death "bed", he asked a friend of his to look after his mother. She had a profound effect on her children, and through them, a much larger audience.
If anyone were to tell Mary, or her son Jesus, that being a wife or mother was not a noble pursuit for a woman, ... well, I'm sure they would have indicated their disagreement in some form or fashion. Now I used this example because I am a Christian. I know there are similar examples of noble womanhood in other belief systems and faiths, and encourage those whose spiritual beliefs are different from mine to share their stories too!
In fact, I am asking for your opinion, not only of my writing on this post, but also of the idea behind it. Your thoughts are IMPORTANT to me. I would be honored to read your comment below.
IMO (In My Opinion), we need to reclaim the dignity and power of the names "woman", "wife" and "mother" ... regardless of the individual circumstances in which we find ourselves. We are the tenders of the hearth, the nurses of the sick, the teachers with students in many stages of life, the team-players. We have the hands that rock the cradle. Whether our influence stretches only to the closest four walls, or around the globe, we change the world every day.
NOTE: This post was edited to reflect it being submitted to the Thursday Favorite Things link-up at Katherine's Corner. Other entries are accessible by using the button above.