Thursday, December 17, 2015

DAY 1561... Mary

For some reason,
since becoming a mom,
I haven't really thought much about Mary.
Maybe it's because I get busy with my children now,
and I'm all caught up in everything else regarding Christmas.
But this year is different.
I cannot stop thinking about Mary and her role in Christmas.
Maybe this is because I am now raising a son,
and that is what Mary did.
Only she raised the son of God.

Translation: I cannot stop crying because she is perhaps the most amazing woman ever!

The past several weeks,
since Benson turned one,
have been really rough for me.
I'm not sure why or what changed,
but it's been incredibly rough for me.
Depression has completely taken over my body and my mind.
I am really struggling.
I cry a lot.

But I cry more when I think about Mary and the amazing mother and woman that she was.
 Mary has been my strength the past couple of weeks.

From the moment the angel appeared to Mary,
to the minute she watched her son be nailed to a cross,
what an insanely emotional and ultimately inspiring life she led.

Let's start from the beginning though.

If an angel appeared to me and told me that I would be pregnant with the son of God,
I would freak.
I would question my ability and that decision.
I'm weak like that.
I question things.
Even though I would probably understand that this was a calling from God,
I wouldn't understand it.
I would struggle with the choice that I was chosen.
Especially if I was as young as Mary was.

And then to carry this holy child for 9 months.
Can you say pressure?
It's probably a good thing that the internet did not exist at the time.
I have so many questions about her pregnancy!
Did Mary have morning sickness?
Did Mary have back pain.
Did Mary have cravings or Braxten Hicks?
I imagine that she pregnancy was a typical pregnancy,
you know besides the whole immaculate conception aspect.

And then she rode a donkey,
pretty much full term.
A donkey!
By my 9th month pregnant,
going over a speed bump just about killed me,
I can't even imagine riding a donkey,
for miles,
being super pregnant.

Then to not be able to find a room to rest in.
For every single inn to be full.
I imagine that her hormones probably kicked in and she probably cried for a minute or so over this.
And maybe,
because she is human,
maybe she prayed to our Heavenly Father and asked,
if she was carrying his son,
was there no room for her.
But we all know that God's plan isn't always what is best and what is easy.
And we know that he does not give preferential treatment.

Then she gave birth in a stable.
She gave birth surrounded by farm animals.
She placed her son,
the son of God,
in a manger,
full of hay.

When we went to the straw maze this Halloween,
Benson freaked when he came in contact with the straw.
It didn't feel good on his skin.
But that is what Jesus had.
It was the best that they could give him.

It seems like it's not enough for Christ.
It makes me sad to know that no one was there helping them.
And maybe someone was.
But it breaks my heart that they weren't provided with the very best.
Did Joseph know how to help Mary give birth?
Were midwives presents?
Who helped Mary deliver her child?

I have read a lot of mixed reports about who was there and who wasn't,
but I'm not sure what is really true.
It's one of those questions to ask after you die for sure.

But what I do know.
Without being there,
without even being present,
and without a doubt in my mind,
is that Mary and Joseph,
we will talk about Joseph in a minute,
but I know that they gave their absolute best,
and everything they had to that baby.

As a mom to ordinary children,
in the worlds opinion,
in my opinion they are extremely extraordinary,
but anyway,
as a mom to ordinary children,
I worry about them constantly.
I cry for them when they hurt.
I pray for them all the time.
I laugh with them when they're happy.
I smile for them when they accomplish their goals.
I love them always.
I defend them when someone hurts them.
I feel for them when they're sad.
I joy in their constant growth.
I'm sure that Mary did the exact same.

As a mother to an extraordinary child,
as a mother to the son of God,
how did she feel?
I can't even imagine being the mother of this child and watching him grow and have those every day struggles.

What did Mary feel when Jesus took his first steps?
What was his first words?
What was her favorite game to play with Jesus when he was a child?

Now let's fast forward a bit...
To watch your son be nailed to a cross,
and to suffer and bleed from every pore.

As a mom,
It would be really hard.
It would be the hardest thing in the world.
Harder than riding a donkey 9 months pregnant.
Harder than countless sleepless nights with a newborn.
Harder than feeling helpless when your child is sick.
Harder than watching them fail.
It would just be really hard.

It doesn't matter that she knew it was what was best,
and that it was God's plan.
That still would be hard.
Because she is a Mom.
And the love you feel for your children as a Mom is the most immediate,
and absolute love there is.

Side note - I have cried just about 17 times while writing this. I am a mess.

And then there's Joseph.
I'm not a dude,
so I don't know everything that there is to know about being a Dad.
But I'm pretty sure that it takes a very good man to love a child like it is his own,
knowing without a doubt that it isn't his.
It takes a strong man to stand by a woman and support her during a normal pregnancy.
A woman needs so much reassurance,
and support during pregnancy.
So for Joseph to be all of those things for her,
there's no doubt that he wasn't,
especially knowing that the baby isn't biologically his,
that's amazing!
Guys tend to have a lot of pride,
and I'm sure it was difficult to accept Mary's,
and ultimately his own,
But he did it.

This painting,
by David Bowman,
is my all time favorite picture of Mary and Joseph!

I love how Mary is looking at Joseph,
the look we all give to our husbands when we see them with children.
It's also that look that say's, "We did it."
Joseph just looks so peaceful,
so calm,
so content,
and so happy.
I love the placement on Joseph's hand over Mary's,
and how happy his eyes are even though they are closed!
I'm obsessed with this picture!

It reminds me of the first pictures I have of Spencer with our babies.

The joy on his face as he held Aniston for the very first time.

This moment that he shared with Benson, as he held him for the first time.

I also really love this video about Joseph, 
that really looks at things through Joseph's eyes.

I am so obsessed with Mary and her story.
As a mother,
there isn't a better example for us,
except for our own mother's who we actually get to witness being a mom,
to look up to.
She is amazing in every sense of the word!

These are some of my absolute favorite songs about Mary.
There's a lot,
because I love them all.

If I could travel back to anytime,
or meet anyone,
I would want to meet Mary and to be present during the birth of Christ.
I would like to watch her,
to see how she acted,
to be her friend.

I feel so blessed to have had the realization of Mary and her goodness this holiday season.
As a struggling mother,
I feel as though I can look to her for strength and inspiration!

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