This year I sang a lullaby to all our nurturing women who serve as parent, mentor and guide to children, neighbors and friends in their lives. The lullaby comes from a children’s book written by Robert Munsch entitled: “I Love You Forever”. The words are:
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living,
My Mommy you'll be.
Now for a moment, put your arms around yourself. Cuddle your body, hold yourself the way you would hold a baby in your arms. Now, after you have a real good hold of yourself, close your eyes and begin to rock yourself. Rock yourself real good, the way you would a baby, and just keep doing it. When you grow up, no matter how old you are, and if you are crying and you don’t know why, I want you to rock yourself just like this. As you do it, remember that you are God’s little child, and that God understands why you are crying even if no one else does. As you rock yourself let me offer this blessing:
To the Moms who are struggling, to those filled with incandescent joy.
To the Moms who are remembering children who have died, and pregnancies that miscarried.
To the Moms who decided other parents were the best choice for their babies, to the Moms who adopted those kids and loved them fierce.
To those experiencing frustration or desperation in infertility.
To those who knew they never wanted kids, and the ways they have contributed to our shared world.
To those who mothered colleagues, mentees, neighborhood kids, and anyone who needed it.
To those remembering Moms no longer with us.
To those moving forward from Moms who did not show love, or hurt those they should have cared for.
Good and Gentle God, we pray in gratitude for our mothers and for all the nurturing women who have joined with you in the wonder of caring for life. You who became human through a woman, grant to all mothers the courage they need to face the uncertain future that life with children always brings. Give them the strength to live and to be loved in return, not perfectly, but humanly. Give them the faithful support of partners, family and friends as they care for the physical and spiritual growth of their children. Give them joy and delight in their children to sustain them through the trials of motherhood. Most of all, give them the wisdom to turn to you for help when they need it most.
Lord, I pray for all our nurturing Sonshine Friends who need your gentle touch to remind them that we don’t have to be perfect to be a mentor to our kids. We need to know that as you hold us close we can hear you sing to us at this very moment: