A Glutton for Motherhood

In July and August the grandchildren who live nearby took turns staying overnight with us. It is always a lot of fun, but as I move away from 50 and nearer to 60, I find my energy levels are not what they used to be.

When it was 5 year old Kateri’s turn she wanted her older sister Bella to come with her. We roamed around the yard together, checked on the chickens, played games and fixed dinner together with much laughter and conversation. At one point I watched as they fearlessly climbed a hemlock tree in the front yard. Image

In the evening we grabbed Andy and went out for ice cream cones and walked to our little town playground. It was a long day.

When I finally had both girls tucked into bed I collapsed next to Andy on the couch, my exhaustion quite evident. That prompted him to comment that I was a “glutton for motherhood”.

At first, I laughed and appreciated his juxtaposition of words in the overlay of phrases. Over the next few weeks, though, I pondered the words and came to see them in another way……or better yet, in a number of different ways.

To begin with “once a mother, always a mother” came to mind. That is a truism that seems to fit a lot of us who have gone through the rigors of raising children. Once they are grown, our mothering continues but in different ways. Then, if one is fortunate, the grandchildren come along and there is ample opportunity to continue the work and joy of motherhood.

Then the saying that “a mother’s love has no end” came floating into the brain. A devoted mother can never truly put aside this love once her children have become adults or have moved on to the eternal shore. It does take another form though for the mother who has a strong faith in the power of prayer.

The mother with a devoted sense of her vocation also moves beyond her own children and family and “mothers” a growing throng of people who move into her orbit, or who are even just brought into her mind as needy children who crave her prayers. To those of us who believe motherhood to be a noble calling and a most worthy endeavor, it is not a burden but gives us a deep sense of fulfillment that we can still use our talents long after we have retired from “active service”.

After more time expired, I came to consider my Carmelite vocation. Those of us in the Carmelite order, whether religious or lay, follow the example and instruction of our Holy Mother, St. Teresa of Jesus, who considered prayer, especially intercessory prayer for priests to be of prime importance. If I am faithful to my vocation as a spiritual mother I can spread myself to mother a great multitude with my prayers and sacrifices. Our hard working priests need this motherhood today more that ever and they can achieve a greater efficacy in the battle for souls with our help.

It was a remark said with humor and in the spur of the moment, but I can truly say that I hope to be a “glutton for motherhood” in all the right ways.

Of course, God always seconds the inspired thoughts and actions with his own words of encouragement, placed before us at the right moment. This one popped out at me at the end of a meditation on the apostolate:

Behold, O Lord, the mission you have entrusted to me, to contribute by prayer and sacrifice to the formation of evangelical workers who will save millions of souls whose mother I shall be.

               St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face


If you would like to read a little book that aptly lays out this program of prayer,

just flip to the back page of the Diary of a Country Mother where

 you will see this picture.


I am sure that St. Therese, and Tim, too, would be overjoyed to see a great army of such “gluttons for motherhood”!

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Glutton for Motherhood

  1. Patricia says:

    Oh Cynthia, what beautiful little faces! I can imagine all the fun you had. Guess what? My son and his wife are expecting in May, so I’m getting very excited about taking on a new role 🙂
    I’m so glad you are still around. I almost deleted you from my blogroll, because I thought you had given up your blog. But, here you are! It’s wonderful to hear all of the publicity your incredibly beautiful book is receiving. I’m blushing remembering that I promised you a review some time ago. I will eventually pop up on Amazon with one…when you least expect it. Please forgive me. It has been a most trying and stressful and busy year for us. I cannot believe it is almost at an end already. I’m trying to catch up on many things. I hope to go back and re-read at least portions of Diary of a Country Mother so that its loveliness can be fresh in my mind and heart when I do write about it. God bless you, Cynthia!

    • cinamonty says:

      Congratulations, Patricia on the little grandbaby to come. How delightful!
      Yes, after a busy spring, summer and early fall, (that sounds rather pathetic), I am finally trying to get to the postings somewhat regularly. I am glad I wasn’t deleted, though!
      I look forward to reading your insights whenever the review gets written. All in God’s good time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s