Many years ago when I was about six months pregnant with my second child I was sitting in the back of the chapel at church with my three-year old, who was very shy. All of a sudden he took off running up the aisle towards the podium, his curly hair bouncing freely behind him. I couldn’t run after him in my condition so I hobbled after him knowing when he became aware of the people all around him he would come running back to me, until then I was in snail pursuit trying to hide my embarrassment at what I perceived as irreverence. He explored the empty choir seats (our choir sits with their families in the congregation until they sing) and found a suitable hiding spot.
I barely remember my embarrassment now; instead I recall curly head’s joy of running up an open path.
Most nurturers seem to run. Mothers in particular run and sometimes the aisle isn’t clear: distractions, frustrations, herculean hurdles, obstacles . . . joy exhausts and we lose focus. Sometimes after months in the depths (see earlier blog posts on depths/seasonal depression), I feel like I’ve been wandering in a zombie haze and all of a sudden I notice the sun shine, I hear birds sing, and I feel the joy begin to flow through me.
Honoring motherhood this month centers around us running up our path with joy. Joy repels distractions and frustrations, energizes us over hurdles and obstacles bringing us focus in our lives. Joy is necessary for our thrival.
Someday my curly-headed runner will have his own family. I hope I have allowed him to learn the joy of running his path. Whenever I feel the distraction, frustration, hurdles, and obstacles of life pulling me off my path I want to remember my curly head running on his little legs with joy.
May you honor your mother and yourself by running your path with joy.