If you keep up with the news even a little bit, then you undoubtedly heard the statement made about Ann Romney last month, stating that she “hadn’t actually worked a day in her life” since she was a stay-at-home mom. I’m not here to bash anyone, and I’m certainly not desiring to start heated political debates. Ick! However, I can’t help but address an issue that seems to an epidemic amongst moms.
Intrigue, emotion, justification, and what I consider reasonable answers immediately hit me when I hear a polarizing statement such as this one. Once I’ve taken a deep breath and tended to the tongue that I bit a little too hard to prevent all of the thoughts that entered my head from pouring out of my mouth, I can’t help but consider the heart of the issue. This one lady made a statement she undoubtedly regrets (I’ve been there more than once), but I believe that the reason there was such a strong reaction to it is because she actually voiced an argument that is always causing under-the-surface tension for mothers on each side of the situation.
The fact is, we all make choices in life, some of them because we’re forced to and others because we want to. No matter how confidently we walk into our life choices, insecurity is lurking within us to bring up doubts along the way.
“Where would I have been if…?”
“Did I throw away a greater opportunity?”
“Women who made a different decision than me seem to have it all figured out.”
Once these doubts have set up residence in our minds, insecurity becomes a mother to comparison, and our already confused hearts become more full of unwelcome tenants.
Motherhood sometimes seems to be synonymous with comparison. But what if we took a stand against this way of thinking? Instead of comparing how much harder our set of circumstances – whether it includes a job outside the home, one inside the home, or solely caring for our children – why can’t it be about giving our callings the attention they deserve?
Rather than comparing how our children behave and learn to those we see when we’re out and about, why can’t we just celebrate each child’s unique gifts and qualities? While we’re at it, why can’t we accept our unique methods of accomplishing our duties as moms and homemakers and purely view the ideas stored up on our Pinterest boards as inspiration rather than signs that we’re failing?
Motherhood is challenging, whether a mom stays home or works outside the home. It’s impossible to fully comprehend what it’s like to be in the other woman’s shoes because we aren’t living her life. Instead of wasting the energy it takes to build up an argument, we would all be better off if we put our efforts into encouraging other moms rather than self-promotion or justification at the expense of putting others down.
Consider how much happier moms as a whole would be if we would just choose to enjoy the children who made us mothers. We are building a legacy for them, and they deserve to see how much richer they make our lives rather than helplessly observing us tear ourselves and others down.
Whatever your calling as a mother is, stand by it, and prayerfully do your best to bring God glory in the process. Let’s never forget our duty as God’s daughters.
He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justly,
To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God? ~ Micah 6:8
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