Mothers are people too
Mothers are people too―with hopes, dreams, fears, faith, doubts, insecurities, weaknesses, and strengths. Some mothers may have hoped and prayed for us to arrive, sacrificing their time, money, energy, and their own health so we might have as good a life as they knew how to provide. Other mothers may have disliked themself and the choices that resulted in pregnancy, and may have blamed us, or cursed the day we were born. Some mothers may have had a hard time looking us in the eye, due to the shame that they felt in themself, and how we “arrived.” Although that shame had nothing to do with us, and everything to do with how they felt about themself, we may have internalized that blame and still hold it inside us today.
A mother’s love for us, reflects her love for herself.
A mother can only love her child as much as she loves herself. And she can only give and receive love with her child as much as she knows how to give and receive love with life and others. The love each of us felt from our different mothers is as different as grains of sand or clouds in the sky. Each mother had love to give, based on their life experience. As children, if we needed love that we couldn’t get from our mother, we may have felt abandoned or stranded, since our mother may have been our only source of life, and we didn’t know how to receive love in any other way. As adults, we may still yearn for a nurturing, motherly love which we may never have felt.
The gap in the love
Regardless of the ways that our mothers did or didn’t show us love, we may still long for the love that our mothers couldn’t give. Even if we were given the “ultimate” mother who was: there for us when we needed her, allowed us to learn and explore ourself and life, helped us manage our feelings and thoughts, and showed us that we were good and loved, we may not be close with her now, or, she may no longer be in our life. Missing her love also leaves a gap.
Believe it or not, from a soul perspective, this gap in love with our mother, whether wide or narrow, can actually be seen as a great gift. It gives us the yearning to grow closer to a steady, unconditional, complete, and supportive love. It is a necessary, transformative agent for our soul. Though this gap may have been with our mothers, it could be with anyone, and can be experienced within all physical, conditional love. When we seek perfectly unconditional love from our mother, other half, anyone or anything, we will feel the gap of disappointment, or lack of love, at some point. No physical person, place, or thing can maintain or sustain our need for love, attention, affection, and security. People die. Friends and family have weak moments when they are not a reliable source of unconditional love. All of us, mothers included. However, the unconditional love we seek, can be experienced.
My story of Big Mother-love
I’m not aware of receiving the kind of consistent love that I hoped for from people. Rather than giving up or staying sad, I kept curiously looking for where to find this elusive, unconditional, steady love that I unexplainably knew existed. My search has a happy ending, which was also a happy beginning. When I discovered that nurturing, mothering, unconditional love was available to me at all times and did not require a mother or other, my confidence and peace soared to the level of fulfillment—without lack or need.
Where is mother-love, if not with our mother?
Nurturing mother-love is available by means of connecting to and recognizing that we are born from a loving source that’s far more profound than our physical mother. Our moms gave us our body and genetics. Moms may have given us physical care during our early years. However, our moms never gave us life. Life is what makes our body function; Life makes our body alive. Life makes our heart beat, our food digest, our lungs breathe, and allows our mind to think and our body to feel. Life/God are the source of this, and we allow ourself to receive this life and love. If we’re still looking to our mother to give us the love we need, we’re “wookin’ puh nub in all the wrong places.” Our mothers and others are not the SOURCE of love—they are companions, for us to learn with and enjoy life with. The complete love we need, comes from life! (If this resonates with you, it can be a great affirmation. You might write it down, place it somewhere you’ll see it regularly and say it out loud.)
How can we know and celebrate mother-love?
There are innumerable ways to know, experience, and celebrate mother-love. Each of us can imagine our very own special way to connect, honor, and cherish (aka love) the Source that allows us to live and be. Personally, I begin each day (and Mother’s Day) by being bathed in the nurturing mother-love of Life/Source/God by giving thanks and praise. I share time with Mother Nature, the mother whose atmosphere allows me to breathe, whose body allows me to eat, whose trees give me shade, whose birds and flowers give me smiles and whose people give me companionship. I water the plants and talk with the trees. I am grateful for the earth for being so beautiful and staying steady in its spin and gravity so I may walk on its surface. As I feel led, I also share time with my physical mother, spiritual mother, and others, in ways that I can give and receive as much love as I and they are willing and capable.
Preparing ourself for a mother-load of mother-love
The only person we can change is ourself. Although we may not be encouraged or assisted by others, we can give ourself a pep talk, change our attitude, and be open to love anyway. The psychological terminology for this is reparenting ourself. It involves learning to be our own mother, learning about and listening to our own needs, and allowing ourself to meet our own needs and feed our own soul. It means we stop seeking love, validation, and security from our mother and others, and start giving it to ourself. After all, isn’t that what growing up, leaving “the nest,” and blossoming into an empowered adult and soul is all about?
This process involves acceptance, sometimes it involves forgiveness, and it involves learning how to be our own best friend. We can learn to accept that we have a need for love that is not fulfilled, and cannot be fulfilled with people and things. We can learn to take responsibility for making the needed changes to our own life, and add more and different ways to show ourself love. We can quit blaming our moms, female friends, or wife for not giving us the love we sought from our mom as a child—and may still be seeking. We can learn to accept ourself both as who we were as a child, and who we are now. If we aren’t ready to accept ourself yet, we might consider taking a step towards acceptance, and not judge ourself. This will free us to be able to forgive ourself for not being different than we were back then, or different than we are right now. By doing either of these (acceptance or forgiveness) of ourself, we free ourself to make new and different choices for our future. After we accept and/or forgive ourself, we can also accept and/or forgive our moms, for being who they were and/or are, and for not meeting our needs. To learn more about forgiveness, click to read more about forgiving ourself, forgiving others, or forgiving Life/God. There’s also lots of information available online, and I’d be honored to have a conversation with anyone who is ready to learn to love and care for themself more fully.
Are you ready for more love?
Learning to receive more love can be as simple as asking ourself some questions, and allowing our answers to be ok. Allowing means that we receive and accept our answers and learn from them, without judging that they are right or wrong. Some questions we might ask and answer are:
- How do I feel right now?
- How do I want to feel?
- How can I give myself the feeling I want?
- How can I allow more love and nurturing into my experience?
- How can I adjust my schedule, diet, exercise & habits to better care for me?
- How can I nurture my talents and abilities?
- What is getting in the way of my receiving more love?
- What do I need to let go of so I can receive more love?
- How can I nurture myself right now?
What say ye?
How will you allow yourself to receive more unconditional nurturing and mother-love? Please share your thoughts and feelings in the comments section, so we may grow in strength and love together.
Always with love,