I had a miserable Mothers Day. Not because of any real reason in particular. It was just tough. I had watched many television specials and movies about mothers and the joys of motherhoods. Read so many social media post that quoted the word of God as it relates to mothers and famous quotes and memes about mothers, and I was miserable.
As I went through the week leading up to this much celebrated day I could feel the spirit of God nudging my ear because he had something to say. I attempted to keep busy because I wasn’t ready for my heart to hear the words that I knew surely would pierce it.
On Mothers Day he sat my little self down and tore into me like only he could. See, if I’m being completely honest with myself, and the truth that is mine, I must admit that I can’t relate to all the things that make mothers so great, because I wasn’t able to experience them. Now don’t get me wrong, my adopted mother did the best she could. We lived in a nice, clean home. We dressed nice, went to private schools, had home cooked meals every night, even took summer vacations. My mother (and father) took very good care of us, we never lacked for what we needed. But even with all of those things that we needed, there were things that I desired that were more important to me than the things that I needed.
Webster says that to nurture is to “feed or nourish.” A mother’s nurture is fuel for the soul. Good mothers pour care into the souls of their children much like sunlight and water pour nutrients into a plant. Our souls flourish when we are being nurtured and cared for. We grow, develop, and change according to the way we were designed.
That is what I desired. To be nurtured. You must remember that I was taken from my birth mother at a very young age. While pregnant with my brother and I, our mother was addicted to drugs. After we were born my mother continued to spend the majority of her time on the streets instead of nurturing her young. After we were removed from our home and our mother we were placed in a foster home where unfortunately we were only two of many. Nurturing was almost non existent there as well. By the time we arrived to our adopted parents, I was dying to be nurtured. I was in need of someone that was going to encourage me, support me, motivate me, push me, tell me they loved me, hug me, wipe my tears, ect. Needless to say that’s not what my mom had to offer. She provided me with what I needed, not what I desired.
Without nurture we wither. The “failure to thrive” syndrome and many other childhood problems are directly related to a lack of nurture. In some cases, institutionalized babies have even died from maternal deprivation and a lack of nurture. We were created with needs that go deeper even than our physical need for food. We need the immaterial and spiritual requirements of relationship in order to live.
As I grew up, through middle school, high school, and now adulthood, my desire never changed. Because my mother could not provide me the things that I desired I put walls up around my heart and kept a safe distance from her so that I would not be disappointed.
When my father passed away last May, I literally moved in with my mother for almost a month. During that time, God gave me a supernatural strength. My mother had lost the only man she loved and she was devastated. I had to give her what she needed, the very thing that I desired, she needed to be nurtured. So for a month God gave me the opportunity to nurture my mother.
Now here we are, on Mothers day and the only gift that I desire is to be nurtured, by my mother. My husband continuously asked me what was wrong with me as I moped around. I couldn’t find a way to explain to him what I felt, because I felt empty.
Finally, before the day was over, as I settled in my bed to ponder my day and feel what I was feeling, God took the opportunity to speak. He told me that just like every other person he has allowed to play apart in my life, my mother had a purpose. Her purpose was not to nurture me. Her purpose was to take care of me and she served her purpose. Her purpose was to give me what I needed and introduce me to the person who would give me what I desired, because it was only that person who could quench my desire. “Sana”, he said, “I never intended any of the mothers I gave you to nurture you. The nurturing that you require will only come from me. I will nurture you in the way that I expect you to nurture the people that I will send to you. Honor your mother for the purpose she served in your life because now it’s time to serve your purpose in her life.”
We often times put a high expectation on the people in our lives that are the closest to us. Even when God reveals that their purpose has been served, we continue to expect from them what they don’t have to give. Looking for people to nurture us rather than the ultimate nurturer. Walking around hurt, angry, and confused with a broken heart.
It hurt when this realization smacked me in my face. I thought that being adopted would afford me all of the desires of my heart. That there would be a completeness that would overtake me. It wasn’t until Mothers Day that I realized completeness had always been within me…HE had always been with me. I just needed to shift my focus.
My relationship with my mother will never be that of a Disney story, no fairy tale endings, but my purpose in the life of my mothers will be fulfilled.