There’s something I think all moms need. No matter how many kids they have, how many they’ve lost, or how long they’ve been at it… Moms need validation. I think this is important for moms now more than ever before. We doubt ourselves constantly. Whether it’s a mom who’s got a husband who provides for them so they can spend their days at home with their kids or they’re a single mom, struggling just to get by, or all the in betweens… I see it all the time… Moms these days are struggling. Moms are looking for any glimmer of hope they can find that they’re doing something right. It’s not just their inner voices criticizing their every move…
Ads surround them… Playing on their insecurities, causing them to question their mothering achievements in order to persuade them to buy products that promise to make them better moms.
Sometimes it’s husbands or parents who put the pressure on mom to meet some sort of ideal. This is is often unintentional.
Then there’s the really big way that we moms are inundated with self-doubt-promoting messages. Social Media. Some moms respond to this by slathering their social media walls with images and videos of their “perfect” home life because it just feels so good to feel good. Those little hearts and thumbs ups and doting comments remind me of a beautiful children’s book by Max Lucado called, “You Are Special.” There are two equally lovely books in this series (the other one is called, “You Are Mine.”) But this one in particular describes a world that is so very like our silly lives on social media.
In the small town of Wemmickville live little wooden people carved by the woodworker named Eli. Eli is always available to the Wemmicks, but he doesn’t meddle in their affairs. In his woodshop he stays, dilligently working. Meanwhile the Wemmicks get themselves into all kinds of silly problems. In “You Are Special,” there is a trend spreading around town. It’s a trend of popularity, skill, and value. The Wemmicks are putting stickers on each other. A very beautiful, skilled, popular Wemmick will get stars–lots and lots of them. Those Wemmicks who happen to be less in the eyes of the other Wemmicks get dot stickers instead of stars.
The Wemmicks eventually find themselves working very hard to earn star stickers and avoid getting dot stickers. The story follows one Wemmick in particular named Punchinello who has an especially difficult time earning star stickers.
It goes on to tell of how Punchinello meets a new friend who surprisingly has no stickers. She has no stickers because stickers don’t stick to her. Other Wemmicks try to give her stickers, but they simply fall off. Punchinello wants that.
*Warning, I am about to spoil the end of the story.*
Punchinello then visits Eli, the warm and welcoming Woodcarver. Eli teaches Punchinello his new friend’s secret–she visits the wood carver every day and learns what HE thinks of her. She leaves his woodshop filled up with Eli’s words of tender love, acceptance, and grace. When she goes back out into the world of Wemmicks, their opinions of her don’t matter anymore and the stickers stop sticking.
Eli reveals that this freedom is available to Punchinello if only he would come and spend some time with his maker and let HIM tell Punchinello who he is.
Moms, we are just like those Wemmicks. We are walking around sticking stickers on each other and trying to earn star stickers and trying not to earn dot stickers. We do this so easily on social media, don’t we? But what we need is words of tender love, acceptance, and grace. Words straight from our maker, telling us who we are. Then it doesn’t really matter, does it? If we get hearts or likes or comments or follows… Because when we are really loved, we don’t need those things.
So I want to give you two gifts, Mom… The first one is this truth– Your Maker adores you. He sees you, and He wants you just as you are. No other opinion matters but His. And He says, “You are lovely, Mama. You are doing amazing. You are enough–in ME, you are enough.”
The second gift I want to give you is a new view. I can’t show you exactly what your Maker sees in you, but I would like to do my best. I really delight in finding the beauty and love in your imperfect, messy motherhood.
It’s in the way you know your children better than anyone–only you are so in-tune to your kids that you can see in the slightest change of their expression, that their feelings are hurt, or they’re scared, or they’re mad.
Only you hold their hand the way you do. No one thinks they’re funnier than you do (except maybe their younger siblings). You’re the one who will read that Dr. Seuss book five billion times because it’s her favorite.
It doesn’t take a lot of time for me to notice these things. I just need a little time with you and I promise it’s there and I’ll find it. There’s so much evidence of your lovely, good, beautiful, real, raw motherhood. I just want to show you.
That’s why I’ve booked a gorgeous B&B in Wasilla with views of the inlet, nice big windows and a comfy cozy setting.
I’m offering Intimate Motherhood mini-Sessions on June 12 & 13th. This is the perfect opportunity to pick something you love doing with your kids–reading books, drawing, painting, snuggling, breastfeeding, playing games, counting fingers and toes–you name it. Come and spend some time giving them your full attention, relaxed, unrushed. No cleaning required. No dressing up required (but allowed if that’s what you want!). Just bring yourself and your little sweets and we’ll get some magical images of your motherhood. $199 until Mother’s Day, $249 after that. This is valued at over $750! Send me a message if you want in on one of these!
If you feel like you’d be more comfortable doing something like this in your own home, I’m booking in-home sessions too! Get in touch if you’d like to learn about scheduling an in-home shoot!
Mom, if you’re the one reading this and you are thinking you’d love to have these kinds of photos done for you but you feel guilty, selfish, or extravagant asking your loved-ones to gift it to you, know this–they want it for you too. They just don’t know it’s an option. Let them know. Let your husband know how much this would mean to you. Let your parents know how hungry you are for a different view. You are worth this gift. This gift is worthy of you.