Thursday, October 18, 2007

Hey mom, are you looking for something?

I know it is a fear of many moms that in their heroic efforts at mothering they will lose themselves, the woman who they were, (as Claire Huxtable said) "before the children". I would suggest that in our journey as women who are also mothers that we haven't lost ourselves, but merely undergoing a metamorphosis into the fullness of the woman God has called us to be. Perhaps different from the woman we once were, in thoughts or actions or dress size (ahem); no less of the woman we once knew-but more of her. And no, this is not a reference to aforementioned dress size.

American Trappist monk, Thomas Merton, has a beautiful reflection on this thought:

Ultimately, the only way I can be myself is to become identified with Him in whom is hidden the reason and fulfillment of my existence.
Therefore, there is only one problem on which all my existence, my peace and my happiness depend; to discover myself in discovering God. If I find Him, I will find myself and if I find my true self, I will find Him.

5 comments:

S. said...

Beautiful! Thank you.

Life in Fitzville said...

My husband is a huge Thomas Merton fan. I have to tell you this funny story. When our Margaret started Kindergarten, her teacher was very concerned. She was the only one who hadn't done pre-school, and the teacher thought she would be very behind, and wanted us to do flashcards etc. with her. I have never been one to push academics early on, but really... this is a two-teacher household, I don't have worries!

So not long after this, Margaret was sitting in my room while I folded laundry. She picked up Merton's "Seven Story Mountain" and began reading it out loud. I was shocked... we had no idea she could read! I said "Margaret, that's a really hard book." She said "Yeah" with that 'duh, mom!' tone. I said "Do you understand it?" ANd she tells me "This guy is really confused about God." Which as you know, sums up the book pretty well!

jena said...

Thank you Jane, so very much. I needed that.
I may never "find myself" and that may actually be a blessing. I may indeed find Him.

And I love LIF's story- that is hilarious!

patjrsmom said...

I'm glad you liked it, Jena. I've been really reflecting on that quote.

Denise,I may join Fitz in becoming a HUGE Merton fan myself. I just find his writing so illuminating. And, on a totally unrelated note...I love the name Margaret. Do you ever call her Maggie?

Jane

Life in Fitzville said...

Nope, she is strictly Margaret. From the time she could talk she would correct anyone who called her anything else.

There is an old song my husband sings called "the Dutchman". It's a beautiful song, and the woman's name is Margaret. A big reason for our using the name.

And yes, Fitz got me hooked on Merton... some great stuff!