Looking back on my teenage years I’m sure I said a lot of hurtful things to people, but there is one situation that I will always remember. One day while I was talking with my mom about all my dreams and aspirations for my life we started talking about me possibly having a family one day. I said “yeah maybe…no offense but I want to be more than just a mom.” Just a mom…. Looking back on it now those are probably some of the most hurtful words I have ever said to my mother and I had no idea at the time. You see my mother is one of the most talented singers and actresses I know. I couldn’t understand why my mother didn’t follow her dream of going to Broadway, she sure as heck had the talent, but she chose to stay home instead. She married my father during college, and they started a family shortly after. When I was younger she would always do shows and perform but then that stopped as we got older and got more involved in sports and activities. She sacrificed her life and her dreams to just be a wife and mother….
Up until recently this concept of being a stay at home mom baffled me. I have many friends and family that stay home with their children and I just didn’t understand why. What could you possibly be doing all day? You cook and clean, that only takes up a few hours of your day, and the baby sleeps most of the day. So what could possibly be filling your time? How did you not go absolutely insane with boredom? I didn’t understand it, and I definitely didn’t want any part of it.
Now flash forward to a few months ago when I came to Bolivia. I really had no idea what kind of work I would be doing here at the Children’s Home. Lucky for me God has a sense of humor, and decided it was time I learned what it was like to be just a mom…. For the past five months I have been working in the houses helping the parents by giving them days and weekends off. This can be anywhere from 9 hours to 60 hours straight depending on the schedule. Also on a few occasions we have had to stay in the houses for 2 weeks straight while the parents were on vacation. So as you all know this requires getting the kids up for school, cleaning, cooking, helping with homework, and all the other responsibilities of a mother. Oh and let’s not forget the joy that is trying to put the children to bed.
Every time we did these long shifts all I could think to myself was “man I do not know how these parents do it.” Then one day the Lord convicted me and said “this is what it is like to be just a mom. Do you understand now?” In that moment my heart was so broken because all I could think about was all of my friends and family who I had belittled by saying that being just a mom isn’t as important. Even worse I thought about what I had said to my mother all those years ago and I was so ashamed. This was the woman who had cared for me, loved me, and helped me accomplish all of my dreams. She is the one who made me believe and even dare to dream big and I had hurt her.
So this is my apology to all the moms out there that I know. I am sorry if I have ever belittled what you do or the importance of it. You Shape and form your children into the people they will be in the future. Remember how much of an impact you have on your children, because they idolize you. “My mother has always been and always will be my hero and best friend.” I would like to think that I now have an idea of what it is like to be a mom, but I have no idea. I just have a little more insight into exactly how hard your job is. You have the chance to change the world through those children! Please never forget your importance and just how wonderful and special it is to be just a mom!!