The word conjures up so many different feelings depending on who you talk to.  As a mom to three beautiful kids I often wonder what my kids will think it means as they get older.  How will they see me?  Have I done enough.  I know that in all my life, the most humbling and rewarding thing I have ever done is being a mom.   It took my husband and I four years full of struggle, tears, heartbreak, and prayer to have our first. Through it all and the years since I have felt unprepared, overwhelmed and entirely inadequate. Every now and again though I have a moment where they look at me and I know that they know I love them. Completely, without reservation, and with no strings attached.

The Dali Lama was once asked to describe his religion. His answer was short. He said, "My religion is simple. My religion is kindness." I have come to view motherhood in a very similar way. Many of the best women I know have never had children of their own. Some children are raised in homes where they never feel loved. To that end I have come to think of motherhood in a little bit different light. It is also shaped how I hope my children see me.

Motherhood is love. It is unconditional and unrelenting. It is sometimes messy but always rewarding. It can be hard, tiring, full of laughter or full of tears.  (And all of that, all at once!) It can wash over you like breaking waves. Washing a heart clean as we serve. It is the supreme gift and does not require a biological connection. It is service. It is a woman's opportunity to wrap up another in a blanket of warmth and humanity. I hope my kids see me do this.  I want them to see their mom reaching out a hand to everyone around her.  I want them to find joy in helping others.  

I want them to see the beauty in life.  Find the joy in the simple things.  Have hope in tough times and be able to draw strength from my love.   I hope that my kids know that no matter what they do, I will always love them.  In that safe place they can go out and be confident in everything they do because they know that I (together with their dad) have their back.

They are my greatest success and my heart is never more full than when i hold them in my arms.