“Little Big Mama”

'Mother's Secrets' by Adam Podlecki
 For the poem “Mother’s Secrets” click the link below this article… 

In most cultures, motherhood symbolizes selflessness, while a mother is perceived as a phenomenon of endless dedication to those placed under her care. Nevertheless, there seems to be a fine line between a parental devotion and martyrdom…

In Poland, the phrase “Matka Polka” (translate “Polish Mother”) is used mainly for honourable causes. One of the largest highly specialized medical complexes in the country is named “Polish Mother’s Memorial Hospital…” In 1830, Matka Polka became the respected recipient of a poem written by Adam Mickiewicz (a celebrated Polish writer). Paradoxically still, over the years, the same phrase began to be commonly associated with the futility of motherhood. Sadly, through many eyes, “Matka Polka”, in spite of her sacrificial devotion to family, is seen as a woman unfulfilled and un-inspiring…

I hardly remember the carefree days when I could do “almost anything” without a moment’s notice. Since becoming a mom, even my small everyday decisions require some form of consideration for others. Life changes when you step into parental shoes, no doubt. The time, which you once thought was yours, no longer even pretends to belong to you; and many things, once estimated to be accomplished in no time, now take longer.

Milton Berle (American comedian/actor) said: “If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?” This rhetorical question, in a humorous way, illustrates how daunting motherhood can get sometimes. At some point, the world of a servant-less mother must accommodate numerous demands including nappies, scattered toys, dirty clothes and messy issues no matter how often the laundry gets done. Moreover, being a mother does not exempt one from having to take care of other responsibilities…

Today’s world glorifies achievement. Everything moves fast – technology, cars, and people. Add the obsession with self, and there you have it – an ordinary mom’s profile comparable to that of a snail, which we all know to be on the smaller/slower side.We mustn’t embrace this view. Otherwise, emotions of sadness or even despair (especially in early stages of motherhood) will take over. The last time I experienced some of the above mentioned feelings, my heart was blessed to hear the following words: “What you’re doing is very important and significant.”

These words may just be what you need right now.

However, there are also other ways to help mama avoid the pitfalls of her noble role…

Don’t push your rest and nutrition to the very bottom of your “important matters” list. Extreme tiredness and lack of proper nutrition can be the cause of a depressive episode. Sometimes, taking a little rest is the solution, even if for 30 minutes only. Get a good night sleep. You are worth “switching off” for seven or eight hours a day. Take time to eat well. Show some respect to Mother Nature – put the Coca-Cola down. Drink mineral water. Thank God for access to the uncontaminated one, especially when you needn’t walk miles to fetch it…This one is meant for all of the less than healthy drinks and foods alike – no disrespect to Coca-Cola executives 😉

Get tired to rest better. Regular exercise is a must! Long term, it will help you feel better physically and mentally. You might be thinking: “I don’t have time to exercise, lady!” I get your point (I’m one of us). However, where there’s a will there’s a way. See exercise as an investment. Be creative… Find a dynamic, colourful, and decent fitness DVD, which the children embrace and which makes you sweat. For the lack of a better alternative, just run out of the house (for a jog, or a walk), the minute another adult comes through the door. Caution: Do Return… 🙂

You are not an island… Don’t act like you don’t need anyone. Meet with positive and inspiring people who challenge you. Take your mind of yourself by helping someone else. Become a member of a genuine and empowering church. Ask God for help. Ask someone to babysit. If not, put a cartoon on, or help the little ones organize their time, so they don’t need you as much. Find a solitary spot where you will not be disturbed (lock yourself in the bathroom if need be), even if for five minutes only. Be silent for a moment, read the Word, pray and/or meditate…

Be a mother to yourself. We complain about having soooo much to do and soooo little time to do it, and then we continue cramming soooo many activities into our schedules. In consequence, we remain “undone” despite of our best efforts. Overwhelmed, exhausted and frustrated we get slower and less productive than we would have been had we taken the necessary time to relax. Say “no” to the demands of your home and “yes” to yourself, if need be. Consistently take small steps towards seeing your own dreams manifest. Whatever it is that you should do for you – do it! Appreciate yourself more, so you can recognize your child as a gift, which she is indeed.

Be grateful. Being a mom is a privilege. Some pay huge amounts of money to conceive. See your child’s smile as a reward. Don’t wish you were somewhere else; your children were older, younger, out of the house, married, whatsoever… This kind of wishing will not change your today, but it will take the joy out of now.

You are an artist with a high callingone of the pioneers and the most influential creators given to paint on the unique canvas of your child’s heart and soul. Your efforts may go unnoticed by people, but Heaven sees the most subtle of your brushstrokes… You are precious… Remember this because you will not always have someone there to remind you.

Little big mom, we need your strength and we need your smile 🙂

Dedicated to mothers, fathers and others… whose lives are devoted to the needs of other people.

The poem “Mother’s Secrets” is right here.

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