As a little girl, I envisioned motherhood. I had a little doll named Kate that I cared for with my whole being. There are photos of my uncle Dave ‘babysitting’ Kate while I ate lunch at our family Christmas. Fast forward a few years, I pretended three little kittens on the farm were my triplets. I forced my younger sisters to nanny and care for my three feline children while I bragged to them about how wonderful motherhood was.
Eight months ago, I faced real motherhood head-on with the birth of our baby girl. Unlike the doll I outgrew or the kittens that scampered away, my vocation as a mother is permanent. God entrusted me with this child. There is no going back! What an honor!
I am grateful to him who has strengthened me, Christ Jesus Our Lord, because he considered me trustworthy in appointing me to the ministry. - 1 Timothy 1:12
Someone once asked me if my daughter provides the necessary tools for my sanctification. The answer is yes! When the post-birth high faded and the sleepless nights caught up to me, I realized motherhood is a battlefield.
The evil one has set his eye on attacking family life. And who is at the center of the family? The mother.
It is hard to recognize the evil one at work when we are in the thick of parenting. His favorite tactic is to deceive us about our identity as mothers. He likes to sneak lies into our hearts that we will never be as good as that one mom we see on social media. He slips comparisons into our interactions with other mothers. He presents guilt and self-blame when something happens to our children. He tricks us into idolizing to-do lists. It is easy to get upset when the baby does not take a good nap because the laundry never got put away and the dishes piled up! He uses our spouse as a decoy punching bag when we have had a rough day. Because of him, we focus on what we have not yet accomplished versus all we have done for our family. Because of him, we allow the world to identify our worth instead of claiming our maternal identity through God the Father.
Have no fear! Jesus Christ has gifted us His mother to fight this battle with us. Our Blessed Mother has defeated the devil countless times before and will do it over and over again for your sake. Mary is advocating for us as we journey through this vocation! She knows firsthand the sacrificial love required from a mother and offers us her loving protection.
Mother Mary, accompany me along this journey of motherhood. Walk alongside me so that I may have the strength to fight off and renounce every lie the evil one planted in my heart. Lead me close to your son so that I may rest in my identity as a mother! Thank you for your trusting Fiat. May I follow your courage and rejoice through all of the challenges regarding this vocation. Spiritually adopt my children and ensure that they never forget how loved they are. Amen!
Until next time, your sister in Christ,