The Fullfillment of Motherhood

Posted by Debra Carmona on 18 May 2013 | Add a Comment

MotherhoodFor years I thought of Mother’s Day as a depressing day. I would go to the greeting card display and browse through all the wonderful sweet sentiments of what a mother means. The lovely pictures painted in the words were so foreign to me. So many writers describe this character of Mother as having powers to healing broken hearts, mending wounds, and giving encouragement when no one else believed in them. I wondered if all that was imaginary. Does such a woman truly exist or was this just like the fairytales where everything ends with happily ever after but we know those stories are just not true.


From a very young age I realised that I had been deprived of a wonderful thing, a mother’s love. The divorce separated me from my birth mother. From the age of four my father required me to call my stepmother Mom but she did not have any of those magical powers that could inspire one to greatness. I was not encouraged to pursue my interests and no support was giving to help me find my way in life. The final nail in the coffin was driven when I left home at age 18 to start out on my own. It was a dead relationship. I knew she didn’t love me, never did. I understood that fact from the early age of five. The woman to whom I was expected to call mother never communicated love, concern, care, tenderness, encouragement, or inspiration none of it. When I moved out on my own she did not visit me unless she came with Dad. It was true she really did not care about me. She made no effort to reach out to me even when her own son, my half brother, came to live with me for a short period of time. She called the house just once. I answered the phone. She did not even greet me, not even a simple hello, instead she immediately asked for my brother. I was not a part of her world never was. I was just the cleaning maid to her.


She did not take the time to teach me anything worthwhile except household chores. Actualy we did the chores better than she ever did so she really did not teach us anything. My two sisters and I were housemaids. We did all the work except cooking which she never let us do much. I do not understand why because she was not the worlds greatest cook. The joke my father used to say whenever he smelled smoke was, “Linda must be cooking again.”  She did burn food often usually because she was parked in front of the television while making dinner. The only time food had any real flavor was when it was burnt. Otherwise it was over boiled so no flavor existed. The square meals we grew up on were boring, tasteless, and not even pleasant to behold. So, you can imagine that I did not know anything about cooking when I started off. She didn’t teach us girls Debra Carmona's Siblingsany other domestic skills either such as sewing, knitting, crocheting, or home decorating. I was the dishwasher, the bathroom cleaner, the organizer and when I got older the babysitter for my siblings of which I never got paid for. I was not taught anything about relationships, morals, child rearing, finances, or the way the world works. Nothing. I went out on my own completely unprepared.



My birth mother was a stranger to me with very limited visits of which we not allowed to be alone with. We never went anywhere with her either. The visits were in the house with my step-mother sitting nearby or in the next room with her ear pressed to the wall lest we said something we should not have and then be dealt with after the visit. So, with such a strained visit it was impossible to get to know our own mother.  Even after I moved out from my Father’s roof I was disconnected yet again from my birth mother who disappeared without a trace.


Baby Book Baby Book
Saved hair clipping
Saved hospital bracelets

Two women in my life but neither of them were a real Mother to me.  No mother saved a lock of my baby hair, or made a baby book noting my firsts. There was no photo album compiled to document my life. I have only one infant picture of myself and no details about those early years. I had no mother to go to for comfort and solace while growing up. No mother to confide in. No mother to call to ask a question when I was facing a new situation and needed some guidance. No mother to help smooth out trying circumstances. No mother to share wise advice or encourage me when I got discouraged, frustrated or just unsure about something. No mother to cry on her shoulder to tell me that everything will be alright. No mother to tell me how much I could do if just I set my mind to it. No mother to believe in me. No mother to hug or pray with me.  No mother to listen or care. No recipes shared. No traditions passed on. No sweet tender memories made.  Nothing just a big empty void with only the imaginations of what might have been or could have been had I had the opportunity to really know my own birth mother.

 

Then I Entered Motherhood

Mother Praying with ChildWhen I became a Mother, Mother's Day took on a whole new meaning. I reflected on my own experience as a mother. All the imaginations I had conjured up in my head of what a mother should be I could then embody. Mother’s Day took on a whole new meaning to me as the fruit of my womb entered my world. I could step into that forbidden territory and become that woman with all those wonderful magical traits that poets and writers describe. My desire was to be to my children what I had wished I could have known. I considered my role as mother as my highest calling, my main role in life, to love, nurture, and train the next generation. I would do so with gusto creating lasting memories for them to cherish the rest of their lives.  I would establish family traditions so years later they will look back and enjoy those memories.  I would prepare them for life not send them out empty handed as was done to me. I would read them storybooks to foster the love of reading. I would make careful observations of their interests and talents and do everything I could to encourage them in those things. I would not spoil them and allow bad behavior such a whining, temper tantrums, arrogance, disrespect, mean spiritedness, selfishness, or disobedience. I would also teach them the work ethic, and lessons of kindness toward others, compassion for those with less, family unity and encourage them to support one another. Most importantly I would teach them about God and instill Biblical principles to live by so they would have a strong solid foundation to stand on when they build their own families. I encouraged them to think for themselves giving them a world view and an honest education about history. I would not let them develop lazy habits nor settle for anything less than doing their best at any given task. I pushed them to reach for higher goals for themselves and not to be satisfied with the status quo.

 

Mother with Son Mother with Son Mother with Son
 My first born, Jonathan
2nd born, James
3rd born, Joseph

The empty void of my childhood has been filled with the joy of motherhood six times over. I have documented each of their lives with pictures, a baby book recording their firsts, saving the hospital wristbands they wore, locks of their baby hair and notes about the world to frame the time that they were born.  I saved one or two of the clothes they wore as babies so I could pass it on to them for their child.  When they were young I sewed special outfits for them. I knitted or crocheted them hats and mittens to keep them warm in winter time. I have a large library of home videos documenting them at various stages of life and capturing many of the important events of their life. I went to their ball games and special events sharing in the important times of their development.

Scrapbooking
Scrapbook organization
 Organizing photos for scrapbooking
Scrapbooking Center

 I made each of them a personalized scrapbook to tell them the story of their life. My current project that I am working on is a handwritten personalized little book to sum up their life for each of them to remind them of whence they came and what our aspirations, hopes and dreams were as we raised them.

Dear Son
 A personal letter to my children, recorded in Mother's own handwriting

 This book will remind them of their great heritage and help inspire them as they consider what they want to do with their children as they establish their own family. There are empty pages after my lengthy note for them to continue the heritage of passing on from one generation to the next. From the collection of videos through all the years I plan to make a full length movie of each of them to document their life story and some funny shorts to highlight certain characteristics and fun family moments.

 

Mother with Son Mother & Daughter Mother with Son
 4th born son, Jacob
Finally a daughter!
5th born son, 6th child, Jared


I have loved being a mother with all of it’s trials and challenges. The most rewarding thing about it is the gratitude they share once they are out on their own. I am so looking forward to the next chapter of my life as a grandmother.  My children did not have the opportunity to have grandparents around very much so once again I shall step into a new role to be what was unknown of which I embrace wholeheartedly. It will be fun to share the books, toys, photos, and family videos to the next generation as my family expands. Two grandchildren are on the way so my crochet hook is back in action.

 

Gifts From My Children

Below are just some of the gifts and notes sent to me from my children

ProFlowers For Mom Love Noite For Mom
 A Valentine gift from my oldest
 A note sent me by my eldest son.

 

Gift For Mom Love Note For Mom
A special gift from my youngest son
 Love note from my youngest

Love Note For Mom
A Mother's Day handmade card from my daughter
Motherhood Defined
My daughter's Definition of Motherhood

Mother's Day Flowers Sheris Berries
 Mother's Day Flowers from my third son
Sheris Berries, Mother's Day Gift from one of my sons



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