The Brokeness of Motherhood

As a little girl, playing mommy was never on my agenda. I was too busy looking for clues to solve the latest back yard mystery like my hero Harriet the Spy, or teaching myself to draw, or reading my set of encyclopedias. For real. I was a solver and a thinker not a coddler. I also kept very much to myself, never letting anyone too close and certainly never letting myself be broken open by another. As a young adult I was usually the onlooker as my friends squeaked, squawked, and swooned over all the tiny humans. I was not totally opposed to claiming this role for myself, it just wasn’t what I lived for. It wasn’t yet me. It wasn’t my desire.

And now, here I am preparing to be a mom for the third time. Third. Three. One, two, three kids in 4 years. I know it happens all the time, but me? Really…?? Now?? Whaaaa?!?!

But then there’s that whole thing about our desires, what gets us out of bed in the morning, what keeps us going. Faith has this way of morphing them into the unexpected. Morphing us into the unexpected. It turns out, when your daily prayer sounds something like – Lord let Your will be done in my life… your old desires kind of go out the window. I am learning that while this is terrifying, it is not a super terrible thing to loosen the grip. To have your desires swept from your hands. Because when those desires catch the current of the nearest breeze, God is there leading them to fertile soil. When left to the doings of God – desires don’t actually die. Like lucky seedlings they defy the odds, break open, grow, blossom and become something new. We become something new. Something more beautiful than we could have imagined. More beautiful than our own human limitations could have ever dreamt up.

Not to say that what will become is perfectly pretty, or even sane. After all, God does have a sense of humor. Or so they say. But I believe He also wants us to taste life while we are here on earth. Really and truly experience all of it. And in order to do that we must enter into the mess, the struggle, let ourselves go and be broken open.

And really is it not always the brokenness of life the stuff that makes us stronger? Builds character? Makes us that much more grateful for the good?

I find myself craving comfort these days, but above that wanting depth and meaning and purpose. I want my life to matter, and if I must die to myself to be taken over by these little creatures, then all the more. Because beneath all of my shallow desires, my flaws, the obstacles I face; deep down I want to be like the flower that grows through the concrete. The one that rises still. Head held high and face to the sun. Somehow graciously accepting these strange desires and unfamiliar surroundings. Acknowledging that I might have thought things would be different but maybe this particular calling is for a higher purpose. A purpose I may never know if I was truly created for, but one that is most certainly creating me.

Now that… that is worth living for. So go ahead – be brave, allow yourselves to be broken, let your desires go, grab a glass of good wine, sit back and watch them grow.

I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. I will glory in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice. Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. (Psalm 34: 1– 4)