Sometimes I can’t believe I’ve been a mother for a decade and a half. I honestly feel like I’m still trying to figure it out.
I sometimes think I’m doing a awful job. I’m horrible at getting my boys timely haircuts. I let them wear worn out clothes all the time, sometimes even to church. The boy’s underwear drawers (or buckets because they just have a plastic garage shelf instead of a chest of drawers) are embarrassing. There is a pile of overstretched, overused, faded boys underpants. Yesterday, I broke down and spent money on little boys underwear just to make their buckets not look so sad.
And Lucy is going to public school.
Yep. That happened.
The truth is that, if I really think about what I learned from my mother, I think I’m doing pretty good job.
If I boil down what my mom taught me, I could give it to you in a sentence. She taught me to love everyone and serve Jesus. She constantly reminded me to look beyond outer appearances and treat others how I wanted to be treated.
Living in West Texas, I continue to hear the same stories from other women my age. They tell me how their mom would always ask them if they were really going to go somewhere without lipstick. I’ve heard it from dozens of women.
That is as foreign as landing on the moon to my experience with my mother. My mom was kind of a hippie. She grew up in the late 70s in Missouri, and when she came to Texas as a teenager, she didn’t quite fit into small, Texas town life. I think she felt like an outsider most of the time, and she wanted to make sure her children always loved the outsider.
My mom rarely made comments on my clothing or hair, and certainly never my make-up.
But if I said something ugly about another kid at school, she sure did speak up. She was quick to remind me to be considerate of that kid, to try and see things from his or her perspective, to understand their home life might be difficult, to be nice to them even if it isn’t returned.
My mom was always concerned about grace and love. I have tried my best to pass those values to my children.
My mom modeled servanthood better than anyone I know. She spent her life taking care of her family. In my teenage years, she was constantly serving, cleaning the church on Saturdays, going on prayer walks, and teaching children’s classes.
I am always in prayer that my children will notice my servanthood and want to emulate it.
Thank you to my mother who valued love and grace. I hope I can continue to strive for that goal.
Thank you to all the mothers who, with their lives, taught us to love and serve others. They have taught us what servanthood looks like, and by doing so, they have shown us how to be great.
As a present to my mom, I'm going to rewrite those sentences above with "mommy" because I know she would like that. It seems awkward and uncool to me, but I know what she likes.