Dear Missionary Motherhood

One beautiful starry night, on a faraway island many miles out at sea, a little girl knelt to say her prayers.  When she had finished giving thanks for all her blessings, she climbed into her big cozy bed beside the open window. And looking up at the brightest star in the sky, she said,

I wish I were
as pretty as a princess,
as rich as a king,
as special as a flower
on the first day of Spring
She was a dreamer as little girls often are at that age.

When the little girl grew to be a teenager, she would walk home from the library on crisp fall evenings.  She would hear the leaves crackle beneath her feet.  And looking up at the brightest star in the sky, she would say,

I wish I were
as pretty as a princess,
as rich as a king,
as special as a flower
on the first day of Spring

She had been told not to be such a dreamer, but she was bored and restless,
as girls often are at that age.

When the young girl grew up to be a woman, she married and had a little son.  She became very busy taking care of her family. She forgot all about her own dreams, as women often do at that age.
One day her little boy came home from school with an essay he had written called "My favorite person".  As she read his words, happy tears filled her eyes, because it was about her that he had written... how wonderful he thought she was - and how pretty.

She realized that the little wish she had long ago forgotten had been granted.   
That night the woman went in to give her sleeping boy a kiss.  As she passed his open window, she looked up at the brightest star in the sky and said to herself:

My son thinks I'm a pretty princess.
My life is as rich as a king's
And I really do feel as special
As a flower on the first day of Spring

Many years later when she was an old, old woman, she would sit on her porch watching the ocean waves in the moonlight.  And looking up at the brightest star in the sky, she felt peaceful.  She smiled.
The tapestry of her being had been woven with fibers of kindness and compassion and honor.
And she encouraged others to dream, as people often do at that age.  One day the angels called her to them.  Those who had been a part of her life came together and carved a stone to remember her.
On the stone, these words were chiseled;

Her heart made her a pretty princess.
She was as special as a flower in Spring,
And anyone who knew her is richer than a King.   

A Dreamers Heart

There are so many different phases in a woman's life and on so many different levels.  Being a mother is one of them.  I think that becoming a mother is a process.  I had many experiences that molded my journey to becoming a mother. 

When I was a little girl I would sing this song .  When I grow up I want to be a mommy and have a family one little two little three little babies of my own.  My mother was very diligent in teaching me that I was a daughter of God and that one day I would grow up and get married and have children of my own.  That is all I could think about.  It shouldn't have been a surprise to her when at age 14 I left home to be a nanny. I loved it so much that I continued being a nanny for several different families for the next 12 years.  I often wrote home telling my family how much I was enjoying the MTC (Motherhood Training Center). 

It wasn't until I became a mother that I fully understood Heavenly Fathers Plan for the role of womanhood.

When Jon was born I realized something was wrong.  His head began to grow big and we were told that he had water on the brain.  I prayed Please God, let me keep this baby.  Then when he started getting headaches it was Please God, don't let this baby be in pain like this.  He is so innocent - please take away his pain.  As Jon has grown he has become very active and again my prayers changed to a different level.  Please God, don't let other people judge my son.  They don't understand him like his parents do.  If people knew him like I know him they would love him too.

On Jons 3rd birthday, he took the dishwasher rack out and ran down the hall with it.  He tripped and fell face first into the prongs.  My heart sank and my stomach tightened when he turned to face me.  His eyes were full of blood and I couldn't tell how bad the damage was.  I called 911 and an ambulance took us to the ER.  Dad and Grandpa came and gave him a blessing.  The prongs had gone through his eyelids and left gashes.  They sent us by ambulance to Rapid City, two hours away.  Dad rode with Jon and I followed in the truck.  It was extremely windy and I could barely keep the truck on the road.  I gripped the wheel so tightly that every muscle in my body hurt.  I was glad that Darrel was with Jon because I could barely hold back the tears.  I prayed nearly the entire time.  Please God, let everything be alright.  Please God, let him keep his eyesight.  Please God, help me keep the truck on the road and clear a path for us to get there in safety.  Please God, give me the strength to keep going.  I'm so tired but I love this little boy so much. 

When I think of our savior and the prayers that Mary must have prayed, they may have been similar to mine.  She must have prayed for her sons safety, for his happiness, for the strength to go on.  She may have cried when he was made fun of or when he was misunderstood.  I can't imagine her sorrow when she knelt at his cross and watched him suffer.  Motherhood is next to divinity.. .  It is a sacred trust.  It is an approach to the divine - a God given privilege that, with its never-ending responsibilities, brings rich and lasting rewards.

A sea turtle lives in the ocean and then after mating will crawl up onto the land to bury its eggs in the sand.  After accomplishing this task it will return to the ocean and shortly after die.  The eggs, left to defend themselves -if not eaten by other animals will face finding their way back to the ocean. We also must learn and grow and stretch beyond our limits.But Heavenly father has not left us to our own devices.  In his glorious plan he has provided a way for children to be nurtured by a father and mother.  In the proclamation to the world it states that it is the mothers primarily responsibility to nurture her children.

Mothers and fathers, teach your children who they are.  They are sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father.  Teach your children Joy. Teach your children Responsibility. Teach your children Service.

Motherhood has been my greatest blessing. No words can describe the wonder and miracle of a brand new life coming into the world. No words can describe the joys of tending to Gods sons and daughters.  What joy it is to watch a child grow.  Their first smile, first tooth, first step, first word.  I am sure that God looks upon his children with hopes and dreams.  I am sure he wants to give them everything to help them reach their full potential.  The role of mother is a sacred responsibility.

I think of you serving your mission and the life lessons you are learning – the gospel you are sharing.  In your preparation to become like God I pray for your success.

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