Just A Mom

A woman, renewing her driver's license at the County Clerk 's office,
was asked by the woman recorder to state her occupation.

She hesitated, uncertain how to classify herself.

'What I mean is,' explained the recorder,'do you have
a job or are you just a ...?'

'Of course I have a job,' snapped the woman. 'I'm a Mom.'

'We don't list 'Mom' as an occupation, 'housewife' covers
it,' said the recorder emphatically.

I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself
in the same situation, this time at our own Town Hall.

The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised, efficient, and possessed
of a high sounding title like, 'Official Interrogator' or 'Town Registrar.'

'What is your occupation?' she probed.

What made me say it? I do not know. The words simply popped out.

'I'm a Research Associate in the field of Child Development and Human Relations.'

The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair and looked up as

though she had not heard right. I repeated the title slowly emphasizing the
most significant words.. Then I stared with wonder as my
pronouncement was written, in bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.

'Might I ask,' said the clerk with new interest, 'just what you do in your field?'

Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice, I heard myself reply,
'I have a continuing program of research (what mother doesn't),
in the laboratory and in the field (normally I would have said indoors and outdoors).
'I'm working for my Masters, (first the Lord and then the whole family)
and already have four credits (all daughters). Of course, the job is
one of the most demanding in the humanities(any mother care to disagree?,
and I often work 14 hours a day, (24 is more like > it).
But the job is more challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers and
the rewards are more of a satisfaction rather than just money.'

There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk's voice as she
completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to the door.

As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous
new career, I was greeted by my lab assistants -- ages 13, 7, and 3.
Upstairs I could hear our new experimental model(a 6 month old baby), in the
child development program, testing out a new vocal pattern.
I felt I had scored a beat on bureaucracy!
And I had goneon the official records as someone more distinguished and
indispensable to mankind than 'just another Mom.'

Motherhood! What a glorious career! Especially when there's a title on the door.

Does this make grandmothers 'Senior Research associates in the field
of Child Development and Human Relations'.

And great grandmothers 'Executive Senior Research Associates?' I think so!!!

I also think it makes Aunts 'Associate Research Assistants.'

A Mothers Tear...

"Why are you crying?" he asked his Mom."Because I'm a mother," she told him.

"I don't understand," he said. His mom just hugged him to her
and said, "You never will."

Later the little boy asked his father why Mother seemed to cry
for no reason. "All mothers cry for no reason," was all his dad could say.

The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why mothers cry.
One night, he had a dream. In his dream, he called God on the telephone.
When God came to the phone the man asked, "God, why do mothers cry so easily?"

God answered him, "My son, you see, when I made mothers, I knew they had to
be special. I made their shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world,
yet gentle enough to give comfort. I gave them an inner strength to endure childbirth
and the rejection that many times come from their children and mates.
I gave them a hardiness that allows them to keep going when
everyone else gives up, and to take care of their families through sickness and
fatigue without complaining. I gave them the sensitivity to love their children
under all circumstances, even when their child has hurt them very badly.
This same sensitivity helps them to make a child's boo-boo feel better and helps
them share a teenager's anxieties and fears. I gave them a tear to shed.
It's theirs, exclusively, to use whenever needed.
It's their only weakness. It is a tear for mankind.


This is for the mothers who have sat up all night with sick toddlers
in their arms, wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayer wieners
and cherry Kool-Aid saying, "It's okay honey, Mommy's here."

Who have sat in rocking chairs for hours on end soothing crying babies
who can't be comforted. This is for all the mothers who show up at work
with spit-up in their hair and milk stains on their
blouses and diapers in their purse.

For all the mothers who run carpools and make cookies and
sew Halloween costumes. And all the mothers who don't.

This is for the mothers who gave birth to babies they'll
never see. And the mothers who took those babies and gave them homes.

This is for the mothers whose priceless art collections are
hanging on their refrigerator doors.

And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football
or soccer games instead of watching from the warmth of their cars.
And that when their kids asked, "Did you see me, Mom?" they could say,
"Of course, I wouldn't have missed it for the world," and mean it.

This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat
them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for
ice cream before dinner. And for all the mothers who count to ten instead,
but realize how child abuse happens.

This is for all the mothers who sat down with their children and explained
all about making babies. And for all the (grand)mothers who wanted
to, but just couldn't find the words.

This is for all the mothers who go hungry, so their children can eat.

For all the mothers who read "Goodnight, Moon" twice a night for a year.
And then read it again, "Just one more time."

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to tie their shoelaces
before they started school. And for all the mothers who opted for Velcro instead.

This is for all the mothers who teach their sons to cook and
their daughters to sink a jump shot.

This is for every mother whose head turns automatically when a little
voice calls "Mom?" in a crowd, even though they know their own offspring are
at home -- or even away at college -- or have their own families.

This is for all the mothers who sent their kids to school with stomach aches,
assuring them they'd be just FINE once they got there, only
to get calls from the school nurse an hour later asking them
to please pick them up. Right away.

This is for mothers whose children have gone astray, who can't find
the words to reach them.

For all the mothers who bite their lips until they bleed when
their 14 year old's dye their hair green.

For all the mothers of the victims of recent school shootings, and the mothers of
those who did the shooting. For the mothers of the survivors, and
the mothers who sat in front of their TVs in horror, hugging their child
who just came home from school, safely.

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to be peaceful,
and now pray they come home safely from a war.

What makes a good mother anyway? Is it patience? Compassion? Broad hips?
The ability to nurse a baby, cook dinner, and sew a button on a
shirt, all at the same time?

Or is it in her heart? Is it the ache she feels when she watches her son or daughter
disappear down the street, walking to school alone for the very first time?
The jolt that takes her from sleep to dread, from bed to crib at 2 A.M.
to put her hand on the back of a sleeping baby?

The panic, years later, that comes again at 2 A.M. when she just wants to hear
their key in the door and know they are safe again in her home? Or the need
to flee from wherever she is and hug her child when she hears
news of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?

The emotions of motherhood are universal and so our thoughts are for young mothers
stumbling through diaper changes and sleep deprivation....
And for mature mothers learning to let go.

For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers. Single mothers and married mothers.
Mothers with money, mothers without. This is for you all. For all of us...

Hang in there. In the end we can only do the best we can. Tell them every day
that we love them. And pray and never stop being a mother.

Before I Was a Mom

Before I was a Mom -

I never tripped over toys or forgot words to a lullaby.

I didn't worry whether or not my plants were poisonous.

I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom -

I had never been puked on.

Pooped on.

Chewed on.

Peed on.

I had complete control of my mind and my thoughts.

I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom -

I never held down a screaming child so doctors could do tests.

Or give shots.

I never looked into teary eyes and cried.

I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.

I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a Mom -

I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn't want to put him down.

I never felt my heart break into a million pieces when I couldn't stop the hurt.

I never knew that something so small could affect my life so much.

I never knew that I could love someone so much.

I never knew I would love being a Mom.

Before I was a Mom -

I didn't know the feeling of having my heart outside my body.

I didn't know how special it could feel to feed a hungry baby.

I didn't know that bond between a mother and her child.

I didn't know that something so small could make me feel so important and happy.

Before I was a Mom -

I had never gotten up in the middle of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.

I had never known the warmth, the joy, the love, the heartache,

the wonderment or the satisfaction of being a Mom.

I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much--

before I was a Mom.

Song playing is


M is for the "million" things she gave me,

O means that she's only growing "old",

T is for the "tears" she shed to save me,

H is for a "heart" of purest gold;

E is for her "eyes", with love light-shining,

R means "right", and right she'll always be,

Put them all together, they spell MOTHER,

A word that means the world to me.