I'm always searching. I look for wisdom and try to latch onto it and embed it into the marrow of my bones. I don't want to store up all this wisdom so that I can hoard it, be perched in an ivory tower, and admired from afar. I want to tuck it into neat little file folders and store it in the filing cabinet of my brain so that I can pull it out at the most opportune time. I want to gather this wisdom to me like pulling clean laundry off the line or out of the dryer so that I can share it when others need it most, when they are at the depths of despair, when they need an uplifting word. I search for wisdom for selfish reasons - primarily because I don't want to feel at a loss when somebody needs comfort most - or to be truthful, when I need comfort most.
I don't think I am alone in this and I think that is the mother element that is deep down inside each of us. Some of us are fortunate enough to have wonderful mothers who set fine examples and lived as a model to guide the way. Others were not so lucky and simply learned what doesn't work and what might be better. Yet, somehow we all learned from our mothers in some fashion and in turn we set our sights at being as good or far better.
As I saw Mother's Day approaching this year, I really began to notice motherhood and searched for wisdom. I searched for wisdom that I could share here. I searched for something profound and earth-shattering. I searched for some ideal. I searched nearby in the ordinary and I looked further away at the famous. In all my searching all I really found is that I am not alone in my search.
Emily Freeman expressed the vast range of mothering in her post,This One's For The Mothers. Like Emily, I've paid attention to the young woman who has spent years getting her education and establishing her career and supporting her husband as he works through earning his degree and begins a career and feels like her timeline is ready for another hash-mark that is motherhood. I've observed a young mother with a month's-old newborn who is coping. She is absorbing as much as she can from that sweet little fellow's out-loud-laughs and sweet, slobbery kisses while she is also fighting delirium from the loss of sleep waking her each night for his feeding. I observe the young mothers with whom I work or those in my own family who are establishing a household, keeping a business going, and nurturing older family members while at the same time changing diapers or potty-training, racing to beat the school-bell, monitoring homework or sibling scuffles, taxi-ing to dance or ball practice, and keeping business going at the same time. I search the mothers around me of tweens and teens and the attitudes, sibling arguments, coming-of-age-maturity pains with which they are dealing. I search the women who are my ancestors dealing with health issues and coping with alone-ness and carrying on. I search my peers and see that they, too, are establishing their place as grandmothers and supportive mothers of adults and figuring out their purpose at this stage as they try to catch their breath from the previous scurrying of raising those adult-children.
In my search for wisdom this week, I also stumbled upon Some Things I Learned About Being A Mom by Sarah, who blogs over atClover Lane. She lists five different things she has learned which are valuable and true and heart-touching but perhaps the most profound one is that she has grown right along with her children and each teaches her something new.
I also took in the wise words of Maria Shriver this morning in her I've Been Thinking post and really relate to the concept that mothers are a towering presence in the lives of others. We tower literally and figuratively at all stages and ages along the journey of life. Whether we have given birth or adopted and mothered children or not, as women we are still role models for others - we might be the model of what one wishes to be at the same time we are the model of what one hopes never to be. The wisdom I've searched for and gathered in to myself is that either one is quite alright - mainly because at any given moment along this journey we could possibly be both at the very same time. Most importantly, for the sanity of all of us is that we all need to find joy in the journey. Each step along the way has its tribulations but also along the way are loads and loads of joy and, as mothers, that is what we should be searching for all along the journey with all of our heart.
I wish you the best in your searches along the way and a Happy Mother's Day as well!