This is #3 in our Guest Blogger series by Athena Grace:
Be honest… If you asked a tiny girl what she wanted to be when she grew up, and she said “a mommy,” would there be some part of you that internally cringed or winced, because you imagined her to be weak, not “dreaming big enough,” or “realizing her potential”?
I’ll be honest. That voice existed inside of me. Until I became a mother. It makes sense. The fifties are but a stone’s feeble skip behind us. An entire generation where women were socially pressured, programmed, and flat out made to stay home, procreate, sew their world into existence and bake like Betty Crocker. Women had to fight so hard, burn their bras and pretend they were men in order to live into more imaginative, worldly destinies. I suppose we call that feminism. Now, here we are a mere half a century (and change) later, and things have evolved. Yet… the world is still limping along as our patriarchal structures crumble in slow motion all around us, leaving us alienated and trembling (and full of hope), and the Heart of the World continues to be crushed beneath the dense rubble of Capitalism, selfishness and greed.
Sociological intricacies aside though, it seems to me that the path of self-referentially inspired motherhood is less respected than, say, becoming a marine biologist, a lawyer, a monster truck rally driver 😉 … or any myriad vocations which require a formal education (and mountainous debt!) and a penetrating, masculine fire to achieve, accomplish, acquire. No, I was not the little girl who aspired to be a mother… but they ARE out there, and they oughtn’t be dismissed or marginalized. The call to motherhood didn’t knock me on my ass till I was around thirty. She flirted with me in my twenties, like a playful game of hide and seek… but nothing too Xtreme…
Then, over the ensuing years, with a teasingly cool hand, Goddess pumped up the volume on my longing, until I awoke one morning to a bassy, outrageous call, thumping in my heart, to bring an angel into my womb and this messy world beyond. The longing bore the purity of a soul call, but it had to contend with the “structurally sound” walls of conditioning that I had built as a result of aforementioned conditions and social programs. I wrastled with myself for half a decade (Haha, that makes five years sound like a heaping scoop of Forever!), questioning this pervasive, burning desire, which had entirely possessed my heart. Though I was not a “tiny girl” anymore, I still questioned the validity of this path. I wondered if it was a cop out… over the years I’d brushed rough, pointy elbows with the notion that creating children was way easier than birthing the books, symphonies and other sky-scraping, galactic wonders that press on one from inside. I mean, pregnancy *seemed* so easy, even a loose, misguided fifteen year old could achieve it…
And now for the paragraph where the force of gravity becomes severe, and pulls your mind right into the molten core of this sermon! How many times over have I come to learn that the practice of life is NOTHING like the concept of life??? Too many to count or name. Yes, I am moved to the molten core of my being by the reality of life with my tiny and miraculous Serena. While I was pregnant, mothers looooved to tell me that I would soon know a love beyond any I’d ever felt. Though this quickly became a weatherbeaten cliche of a gospel, I never tired of listening to the enchanting, contemporary myth, spilling from the lips of women who sang it to me from the “mOther side” of the fence. Really, what better dream is there to entertain, than the promise of perfect intimacy with Love’s Infinity? It reminds me of the Baby Jesus’s story… “Do you hear what I hear?… A song, a song, high above the trees, with a Voice as big as the Sea.”
Yup. It was just like that. Pure Goodness and Light… And indeed, through these early stages of motherhood, I have been blessed with deepening experiential realization of God’s endless love for all HeSheIt’s children, the pure and eternal nature of my own (and everybody’s) indwelling innocence, and the ESSENTIAL HEALING POWER OF MOTHER LOVE. I am sure that Mother Love is the glue of this World. This is why the Dali Lama proclaimed that Western women will save the world– we have the invincible combination of Mother Love, plus the wealth, resources and technology to put this oceanic force of the Heart into action. I have always believed in the Actualization of the world of love, peace and harmony my heart ever speaks of… but becoming a mother has anchored this inevitability into my cells.
What the mamas of the world failed to mention about this impending explosion into Mother Love, was that my heart would permanently break. Open. And the deep, holy feelings, like water would stream to all people and situations, flooding my perceptions with new heights of tenderness, compassion and embodied realization of the Unity of all life. Yes! That’s the crucial piece. I’ve always intuited this Oneness, which pervades the enchanting diversity of the world we play and dance, suffer and Become in… But it’s the unrelenting fierceness of Mother Love, who cares so deeply, She will offer her whole Self in service of this Divine Reality. Emerging in the sacred role of Mother, I feel both more fully on the Ground, and smeared about the Heavens. Giving birth was the quintessence of this convergence. There is nothing more physically demanding than pushing a baby through your vagina. And yet, this feat would be IMPOSSIBLE without the full force of the Invisible Miraculous, acting on a laboring wOMan’s behalf.
Geez, I’m making myself out to be a fresh-baked Saint, with all this talk of perfected, selfless love… I’m not. I’m as deliciously flawed as the next forgetful, winged agent of Heaven. That said, I AM waking ever-deeper into the great call of love, rising up from inside my hidden infinity. I have been for my entire life… But Serena’s entrance into the world was like dynamite, exploding open new dimensions of divinity in me. I am coming to cellularly comprehend that no institution of higher learning compares to the heart-full journey of selfless service, and the ego’s blissful obliteration into the radiant center of Mother love. I’d put all my money (and yours!) on my self-proclaimed LMNOP from the “Academy of Higher Loving,” versus your scientifically rigid PhD any day of the week! No, I’m not opposed to “formal education”… I am merely inviting you to consider the profound validity of less conventionally accepted paths of Mastery. And at the end of the day, is there really any Mastery beyond the Mastery of Love?
If you are a mother, aspire to become a mother, HAVE a mother, or just LOVE LIKE A MOTHER… Please! KNOW that your love is an essential and sacred offering on the altar of this life. Know that your love is everything. Your love has the power to heal, transform, transcend and awaken the hearts of Humanity. It can be tempting to try to decipher the future by superimposing the past onto it… But this will not give you an accurate read on what is to come. The truest way to peer into the future of this world, is through the ever faith-full window of your very own inspired heart. I believe in the power of YOUR love. It’s time you did.