Tuesday, September 8, 2015

God's Mothering Me

There's a lot of talk about dads being MIA and how that affects kids, which I get. I felt I was better off when my dads were literally not around. What I didn't realize growing up was that my mom was tied in knots over relationship stuff and ended up low on gas when she turned to mothering me. I remember some sweet times of connection, but there's more. Much, much more. 

our cat in a warm cozy spot
Our first experience of being taken care of is in utero and since every drop of goodness that comes to us is from God herself, I feel there's a nurturing womb-like place for us that lasts our whole lives. I wasn't aware of this feeling before I went to a yoga studio. The teachers' voices were soothing, they said their words with a reassuring cadence, the room was zen, the sunlight or candlelight warm. It felt like I was being wrapped up and cared for, like God was swaddling me. 

I know I'm more tactile than most, so this may be hard to relate to, but when I smell a rose I can almost feel the shot of serotonin going to my brain. That's one reason I think God gave me yoga. I needed to know he loves me like that. Warm and wide and pillowy. It tells me it's okay to need to be comforted. He always knew I would. It's great to wake up one day and know there's a place like that for your soul to go. 

Because I wasn't super familiar with motherly comfort, I had talked myself out of needing it. That's the easiest thing to do, right? You sense something's missing and immediately decide it's not actually necessary. "That's okay; I don't need it," or "I don't care. I'm not sure I'd like that anyway." I didn't know I'd been waiting all this time for a place I could crumple. It's like I've been holding my breath for years and now I'm able to exhale sometimes. I've found a heart so big and soft, I can plop down and admit my whatever hurts because she'll always care. 

She'll care when my body image hurts.

She'll care when my wrist hurts.

She'll care when a relationship hurts.

But back to the baby imagery...it's wreaking wonderful havoc on my feeling that production and contribution equal self worth. Babies don't contribute but ALL of us feel strongly they deserve to be cared for and nurtured. During my resting times, I don't feel like I deserve love. I haven't earned it. 

But love isn't an earned thing. 

It's a decision made by someone outside of us, which is terrifyingly out of our control. Thankfully, God IS love, so he's pre-decided on love every time. It's not a response to our worthiness, it's a response to us existing! Which means we can rest without our love-o-meter dipping. 

Another thing about the baby scenario is how God said she knit us together when we were just beginning. Whether you're digging through years of emotional crap or finding more and more medical problems, you can start feeling like a hot mess. I was feeling this in yoga one day and I felt like the beauty around me was putting me back together. Hmm...God knit me together once before and while life's unraveled quite a bit of me, I sometimes catch the clickety-clack of knitting needles. And if I picture God knitting me, I see a serene look on her face. Like this is all she does all day every day.

And it ain't no thang.  

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