Psalm 131: 2 (in my words)
But I have stilled and quieted my soul, like a baby with its mother. My soul is at peace, like a little child.
This week I made a slightly odd flavor; caramel & sea-salt ice-cream. The caramel a complex sweetness created by burning the sugar, its byproduct stickiness becomes its addictive downfall and redeeming touch. The sea-salt, added sparingly contrasts the sweetness of the caramel and melds the flavors. Too much would ruin the taste, and too little would make a dish bland.
One of the joys of eating meals at camp during the summer is a chance to share the table with others. I am never quite sure heading into the dining hall who we are going to sit with or how my children will behave. Tonight I was given a compliment from across the table as they observed my enjoyment of motherhood. I accepted these kind words but truth be told I am not one who gracefully entered into this role but more entered like my first daughter did into this world; kicking and screaming. I always wanted to become a mother and truly love kids, so I was slightly caught off guard at my hesitant reaction to embrace these precious gifts in my life.
I spent the months leading up to my first daughters arrival eating all the right foods, exercising and going to natural child birth classes. The one thing that I failed to do was prepare myself with the skills and emotional strength it took to actually care for a new baby. This new life glaringly revealed my selfishness and need for grace. I spent quite a few years warming up to the role, softening my heart and slowly learned to embrace its diversity. I fought staying at home full time with them until the sticky little sweeties won over my heart.
Motherhood is not for the faint of heart, it is a role for those waiting to meet their extremes. It’s an intentional surrender of your freedom to love another deeply. You cannot truly enjoy the sweetness without the contrasting saltness, the flavors compliment on a new level. It is a messy undertaking with its stickiness and overpowering zest, but I can assure you one thing it’s never bland. Somehow the days begin to meld and leave you with something to truly savor.