Monday, February 20, 2012

Is it Monday Again? Mother Love

This is a glorious morning. 

Bright sunshine first thing in the morning.  It's a great way to start the day.  It's the fourth day in a row here for us and is unusual this time of the year.  Michigan has had a mild winter this year...and I have to say even though I enjoy the snows and the beauty it brings; I have so enjoyed hardly wearing the winter coat this year!  

A thought for this day I'll share while we enjoy the sunshine.

Be an encouragement to young mothers with little ones.  It can make such a difference.

My daughter has two babies close in age and is always encouraged by those with a positive attitude she encounters when she is out and about and others see her with two little ones in the cart at the grocery store.  

For instance, older couples are always sweet and adorable and tell her she will never be sorry she had her babies close and that she will never be sorry for having more children.  

At the opposite end of the spectrum, younger people tend to think they have a right to be quite outspoken and opinionated about her having two children so close!  This without, of course, realizing that she was surprised and fortunate to even become pregnant on her own for a second time--it happened against many odds.  

When we make comments about someone's family we need to realize that we do NOT know their story.  Jamie and Thad struggled with infertility to get their first child.  The second was a surprise and yet she was a very, very welcomed one!

If you see a grocery cart with two little ones in it and a hard-working mom trying to get her groceries, don't say anything to her UNLESS it can be KIND and ENCOURAGING or helpful!

At church yesterday, a sweet lady from the choir made a point of coming to my daughter to tell her that she loved Audrey's red hair.  This lady saw Audrey from the choir loft and said to herself:  "There's another redhead like me!"  

And she took the time and cheerfully came to my daughter after church and gave her an encouraging word.  Young mothers can use all the love they can get.  

It can be a bit lonely sometimes to stay at home with little ones, yet it is the MOST valuable line of work in the whole world!  Look for ways to encourage and love young moms in any way that you can see!

Being so far away from my daughter and grandchildren, and not being able to be immediately available for in-person, in range encouragement to touch and love them, I am especially sensitive for how we treat our young mothers that are doing the hard thing, the right thing, staying in their children's lives on a daily basis by choosing to stay home and raise their babies themselves.

I have a little experience with this because my last baby was spaced far behind my first kids.  The most hurtful comments came from, of all people, those at church! 

"Did you PLAN it this way?!"  

At church one elderly man (who, according to his age and white hair should have indicated more wisdom!) said to me: 

"What were you THINKING?!"  

(I was ONLY 35!  I often wonder what these same men would have said to Abraham and Sarah in the Bible times!)

Another elderly man at work said:

"Are you nuts!? You already have a boy and a girl, what would you want to have another baby for?!"  

It was appalling!

I know that many of you agree with me, and I know I have the kindest of blog readers--yet just wanted to raise awareness of this issue so that we can be more sensitive--it's actually not any of our business as to how a family spaces  their children!   

If we can't say something nice, then don't say anything at all!

Off my soapbox now, this sunshine is showing me, very clearly, all the work I must do around here today!  

I want you to have a sunny Monday, and remember to try to be an encouragement if you can.  Our words and our actions can make (or break!) someone's day!  


Mary Ann Potter said...

You are absolutely right about comments made to young mamas! It seems that people have forgotten their manners, that some things are none of their business, and that to honor God is to speak life and blessings! What's really scary to me is how so-called social media has taken over what used to be good conversation. People get so wrapped up in saying exactly what they think online that it translates into their personal lives as well! I am hopelessly old-fashioned and proud of it!

We had only a little snow down here in North Carolina. Since moving from Michigan in '83, the only things we miss are opening day at Tiger Stadium and our season tickets to MSU football. We surely have never missed the dark, cold winters. Glad y'all are having sunny days there. Here's to spring! 8-)

T said...

It seems manners are nonexistent these days. Raising your own children seems to be nonexsitent as well. I am on the opposite side of the spectrum as your sweet daughter. I am now pregnant with my third child (a total surprise) and my children are not close together but spaced far apart. My two girls are 15 and 9 and I get the most rude and hurtful comments about this pregnancy. I am fully aware of how far apart my children are and do not need it pointed out by random people who have little to do with my life. I am blessed to have a handful of people who are truly happy for us and realize each and every baby is a blessing. I am also beyond blessed to be a stay at home wife and mother and raise my own children. Your daughter is doing a wonderful Godly thing and will be blessed for it.

Echoes From the Hill said...

I had three children in just over three years. They are all grown, and I have seven grandchildren. Things haven't changed all that much. When my three were babies/toddlers, I had a neighbor, who was also a stay at home mother. She had three the ages of my children, plus one more, a baby. One afternoon, we went into a casual restaurant together. Someone said, "Haven't you heard about birth control?" It was embarrassing and it was rude. We felt like we really shouldn't be seen, together, with seven little ones again.

Madge Bloom said...

You are so right about encouraging young moms... it is the most important job on earth! I've followed you back on GFC and love your country photography...Will you consider entering your fav for the week in my 'Weekly Top Shot' meme? We're on Week #18 and I'd love to see you share with me and my readers! Here's this weeks' link:

judemiller1 said...

My children were 14, 12 and 10 and I had another baby. I got those awful comments too. What a joy she was and is to our family--now a mother of 4--ages 10,8,6 and 4 months.

mary your sis said...

I agree wholeheartedly! I love to see mothers who love their children and wisely invest in their childrens future. Jamie has a beautiful family and I'm proud of her and Thad that they've made the sacrifices needed to make it possible for her to stay at home and nurture these two little treasures.
There are plenty of boobs in the world who have brains smaller than their mouths. Hopefully their nonsense will be drowned out by the sounds of happy, well-raised children, who are this country's future!

Linda said...

I totally agree...We had 2 children 2 1/2 yrs apart and wish I could have had more. Our daughter has 2 boys spaced 5 yrs apart, our son-in-law has a great career that enables her to stay at home. I wish more young mothers could stay at home with their young children.

Sandie said...

Joni, I had three babies in four years and the last two 15 months apart. I have loved every minute of those two being so close in age. They were almost like twins. They loved each other so much. I also kept two little girls at the same time whose mother had left them and you should have seen the looks when we went shopping! I would just smile because I knew they thought they were all mine! The problem I have had forever is with being a stay at home Mom. People love to make their snide little comments about me staying at home to raise my children. I learned to stay out of all conversations about "being so busy" because since I did not work outside the home I apparently lived a glorious life of luxury! If they only knew! I sacrificed a lot and worked hard at home not to have to work in order to stay home and be there for them. People can be so cruel with their comments! I must remember to watch what I say also and to be an encourager! Thanks for the reminder! Sande