It’s more than just waking up at wee hours in the morning or changing nappies. It’s more than just learning the art of pacifying and singing lullabies. It’s a league of its own. It’s called MOTHERHOOD, and it’s a major league.
I joined this league December of last year. A newbie with no previous experience whatsoever, I learned the ropes of motherhood as I experienced it daily. It’s a good thing that you don’t get disqualified from this league. Once you’re in it, you’re in it for the rest of your life regardless if you goof up every now and then. And yes, goof up I did. During Timmy’s first two months, I had a lot of those mishaps. There were times when I would feed him and make him burp then a few minutes after he would do the “hurl”. Next thing I know, my face and chest are filled with milk and he looks just as messy as mommy. There were days when he was just colicky. He would cry and cry for no apparent reason. He’s not hungry, wet, nor sleepy. I would sing to him, dance with him, rock him sideways, do the pillow-hug routine (which I invented), talk to him, pray for him, and everything else in between—but he would still cry to no avail. There were times when I felt like I was just not fit to be a mom especially when other people can calm him in a snap. Little did I know that one of the ways to pacify a baby is through what they call “change of arms”, which is simply passing the baby to another person. There are a lot of ways actually like change of environment (you go say from your room to the living room), walking, and change of arms. Too bad, I read about this when Timmy passed this stage already. I already took everything personally, thought that everybody’s against me, and cried about it needlessly. Haha! 🙂
Players in any league have substitutes, mothers don’t. I am a mother 24/7. I live and breathe this role daily and incessantly. I’m actually glad that no one can replace the role of mothers in our lives. My mom did an exceptional job in raising me and my sister. I saw the same thing in my grandmother and mother-in-law. These women showed unconditional love that is beyond measure. I truly hope and pray that I will be the same to my little Timmy. I’ve been a mom for 7 months and counting, and it’s only now that I’m able to grasp what unconditional love entails. It means having to get up every hour or two just to feed your baby. It means having to take care of him in the morning despite the lack of sleep. It means staying by his bedside whether he’s at home or confined in a hospital. It means speaking up for your child when the medical procedure is unbearable anymore (like when the doctors were needle-happy as they kept on missing the vein of Timmy for IV insertion). It means making ends meet to provide for the needs of your baby. It means skipping shopping and other personal leisure to be a good steward of your family’s finances. It means working closely and tirelessly with your husband in making sure that you’re on the same page in rearing your child. It means praying continuously for your little one. It means not giving up when you can’t pacify him or put him to sleep. It means being ready to play with him even if you’re tired. It means being cautious at all times to protect him from getting hurt. It means being patient with him when he’s too whiny or too playful (like when Timmy pulls my hair, earrings, shirt, and everything else he can grab on my face :)). Most of all, it means being sacrificial with your time, energy, and whatever you can give just to make sure that you’re able to communicate your love for him. I believe there’s a whole lot more to unconditional love than what I’ve written and I have yet to discover them as I stay on this league.
Players in any league stop playing when the game is over. But being a mom doesn’t end when your baby sleeps or when he’s with grandma and grandpa. Your responsibility extends even in those times when your baby seems not to need you. There will be times that you will have to be in the background, cheering for your child, encouraging him, and praying for him. Even when that once little crawler gets married someday and it seems that he won’t be needing you anymore, you will always be a mother to him—the way my mom remained as my inspiration and encourager even as I got married and bore a child of my own. The game is never over once you become a mom. I believe that you will always be on your toes when it comes to your child. You will always be protective at some point and you will never get tired of showing your concern whatever his age may be.
Just like in any league, you also have hall of famers you look up to. Being a mom made me appreciate my mom a million times more. I now understand why she would become over-protective regarding my health. I now see the deep love behind her discipline. I now value all the more the time she devoted in rearing us, giving up her job to become a full-time mom. I now see how beautiful she has become inside and out as she ages gracefully. I now know where the strength and tenacity comes from in the midst of adversity when she’s at my bedside and I’m very sick. I love her all the more now that I am a mother myself. But apart from my mom, I must say that the person I appreciated the most as I entered motherhood is GOD. This sacrifice of giving up your son for unworthy people is just beyond me. I can never do that, not even in my wildest dreams and noblest intentions. God is the perfect example of a sacrificial, gracious, and loving parent. He gave His one and only Son to die for us just because He wants us to be reconciled to Him. Only a God like Him can show such great sacrifice. He is patient, forbearing, merciful, forgiving, generous, and altogether perfect. I believe He’s the first hall of famer in this league of parenthood. 🙂
It’s a privilege to be a mother. It’s an honour to be a part of this league where glorified players called “mothers” give their heart and soul for their children. It’s a league where rewards are not trophies or championship rings but big smiles, twinkling eyes, precious hugs, sweet kisses, and encouraging words of affirmation. It’s a league of its own and the most fulfilling one at that. 🙂