Dear New Mom: Etching A Legacy

NOTE: This post is for all kinds of mamas; the kinds that parent their own kids, other people’s kids, and the kids who don’t have moms. All women are mamas of some kind and deserve to be celebrated.

Dear New Mom,

In the car yesterday, Keith and I were talking about the lack of standardized testing for parents (leave it to two nerds to be kind of bummed about that). As a parent, it is so difficult to know if you are doing a good (or even adequate) job because the results of your hard work are not evident until your child grows up (I use that term lightly – can you really call teenagers and young adults, myself included, grown up?!).


When we got up to Mt Charleston, I wasn’t feeling so great, so I decided to take some photos and journal while Keith and Caleb went hiking. I love the aspen trees up there (aspens are my third favorite tree), so I wandered through the grove and stumbled upon something that made me think.


Most of the white, paper-like bark was engraved with the names of people who had come before and with initial-filled hearts of declarations of love. I am not condoning destruction of nature, but it was already there, so it caught my attention.


As moms, we are working hard each day to etch something on our kids’ lives. We are etching lessons of how to behave, how to treat one another, how to love, and how to enjoy life. Whether we are being intentional or not, we are constantly teaching and etching. I use the terms “mom” in the broadest sense: I believe every woman who has an impact in the lives of younger people is considered a mother.


Therefore, no matter how many kids you have, Mother’s Day is all about celebrating the women who do the hard work of mothering.


It takes a lifetime to see the effects of our etchings. It is hard work on our part and, in time, it will become beautiful artwork in the lives of our kids.


Happy Mother’s Day to all those who are doing the hard work of mothering: would you take some time today to encourage someone who finds this day difficult? Women who have lost their own moms or lost children need an extra boost of love today.


Good job on all your hard work, New Mom, reward yourself with some chocolate that you may or may not eat every day anyways 🙂


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  1. Auntie on May 14, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    OK, so what are your FIRST two favorite trees?
    I frequently (aka almost always) read your posts from my cell phone – whereby the pictures do NOT come with the text. So today I thought I’d come see what I’ve been missing. These trees are BEAUTIFUL. I totally agree with you about not wanting to deface nature, but since it’s already there… there is such beauty in it and in the aging of the bark. You’re magnificent for pointing it out.
    Second. I miss you.
    I miss your baby.
    I miss your husband.
    I miss your father.
    I miss your mother.
    I miss your sister.
    I miss your father. Yeah. I said that one again (I just read Molly’s blog from 5/8).
    Third, Auntie is going to look at the zip my pants thing!
    Fourth, I’m so PROUD of you three for your trip to Bolivia – I prayed every day! (As always, but a little extra…) I”m so proud for so MANY reasons.
    I love you.

    • Becky M on May 15, 2013 at 4:21 pm

      1. Willow
      2. Oak
      3. Aspen

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