Today is Mother’s Day. I looked up the definition of Mother’s Day, curious what it would say. I found the following:
Mother’s Day is a modern celebration honoring one’s own mother, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society.
The part that stood out to me was “the influence of mothers in society”. This not only suggests that mothers have an influential place in society, but it says they do influence society. That, I would say, is a big task, a huge calling to all moms out there! If we ever felt insignificant or like a failure, the celebration of mother’s day should bring us back to our calling. We, through the raising up of our kids, can influence society! This brings me to a movie I watched a while back, Mom’s Night Out (you can see the trailer at the end of this post). I thought it would just be a fun, relaxing movie, which it was. But it also contains a lot of lessons for all of us moms out there who struggle with being enough, doing enough and just with motherhood in its whole.
The movie is about a stay at home mom who is trying her best to keep it all together. However, she feels like she is failing as a mom, wife, friend, church member and person. She tries to organize a mom’s night out for her and her friends, but the night has some unexpected turns. But these unexpected turns lead her to unexpected people who teach her some meaningful lessons. At the beginning of the movie, Ally, the main charachter, tells her husband that being a mom was all she ever wanted to be, but now that that dream has been fulfilled, she wonders why she isn’t happy. I recognize myself in this. My biggest dream was to get married at a young age and have a big family. I got married when I was 22 years old and am now 26 years old, I have two toddlers and am pregnant with the third. A huge blessing to have that dream fulfilled. Yet, like Ally, I often wonder, why is it hard to be truly happy?
The answer lies in the way we look at ourselves and the expectations we have of ourselves as a person, as wife, as a mom, as a daughter, and as a friend. And if there’s one thing I have learned the last years is that our expectations of ourselves are always too high. We will never reach them because we will place them higher each time. We spend a lot of time beating ourselves down. We forget to just be us. We forget that that is enough.
In the movie, one of those unexpected people Ally ends up spending the evening with talks to her about these issues. And he says the following to her: God didn’t make a mistake giving your kids the momma he did. So you just need to be you. He’ll take care of the rest.
When I heard that, I thought, wow, that’s it? I just need to be me, even with all my feelings of failure and shortcomings? Yes! That is enough. When I started thinking about it, once we let ourselves be who we are, when we stop comparing ourselves, we find rest. And when we, as mom, reach the point of rest in our minds, we can start letting ourselves be happy. Our children will notice and feel that difference. It is then that we will start growing and changing because we are no longer putting expectations on ourselves which we will never measure up to, but we know that we are enough.
I want to end this post with something Ally wrote on her blog at the end of the movie.
FALSE: I’m a failure. Yes, very false. I’m not perfect. I make plenty of mistakes. But I’m right where God wants me to be and He’s given me everything I need to be a mom. I’m a mess. But I’m a beautiful mess. I’m His masterpiece. And that’s enough.
I started this post with the definiton of Mother’s day and the influence we as mom’s have in society. There’s a line from a poem by William Ross Wallace that says,”The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world”.
To all you moms out here, we have a huge responsiblity. We are needed, don’t forget that. Our children need us to love them, to train them, to teach them, to be there for them. When we are shaping, molding and loving our children, we are changing the world. I would say that that is more than enough.
Happy Mother’s Day,