Out of respect for your precious little free time and limited energy reserves, I’ll get straight to the point:
We the People need you right now. We need you to realize your worth, rise up in all your messy maternal glory, and lead us to higher ground. Though you likely feel limited in your ability to make much of a difference, your potential to change, better, and help heal our nation (and consequently, the world) is much greater than you’ve been led to believe.
Don’t worry, I’m not here to add to your guilt, frustration, or workload. I know very well how overwhelming it can feel to have both the heart of a changemaker and the life of a mother. What I am here to do is remind you of something that it’s easy to forget within our confused and confusing culture:
You are incredibly powerful, incredibly important, and so very essential to any movement toward a better tomorrow.
Chances are, you don’t usually feel very powerful. If you’re anything like the many passionate, intentional mothers I know, love, and work with, you spend a great deal of your time and energy compensating for and trying to make peace with the disempowerment you feel. Though your work outside the home may meet your needs for a sense of accomplishment, appreciation and legitimacy, rarely is motherhood itself acknowledged as a position of power or great importance. We may intuit our importance, but that quiet, internal voice is easily drowned out by the much louder (and quite convincing) voices around us. Many of us are so accustomed to feeling undervalued, under supported, and/or disrespected in one way or another (both by the culture at large, and within our own family systems), that we suffer from a near-constant sense that we are not doing enough; that we are not enough.
We tend to forget, however, that this reality has nothing to do with our actual worth as mothers and everything to do with the long-told cultural stories that motherhood—and, consequently, every mother’s sense of self—has been misrepresented and diminished by.
In other words, most of us don’t see our roles or ourselves clearly. We buy into the common, largely-unspoken narrative that we can’t make much of a difference, and that motherhood isn’t a position of importance, because in many ways, it feels true. Between constant distractions, frequent exhaustion, unending responsibilities, and the maternal wiring that keeps us primarily focused on the immediate needs of our families, it’s hard to see ourselves as changemakers. It’s hard to see ourselves as powerful people.
Combine this collective sense of disempowerment with the fact that we care deeply about the state of the world and the future we’re handing to our children, and it’s easy to become discouraged. What’s a mother to do as she witnesses countless national and global crises and realizes that she’s too busy with seemingly insignificant, mundane, everyday tasks to do anything about them?
Herein lies not only the heart of our struggle but the key to shifting our story:
We’ve been conditioned to think of our roles as less important than other’s. We feel this way not because our contributions are actually insignificant or unimportant, but because our perceptions of ourselves (as mothers and as women), have been formed within a patriarchy. The very same patriarchy that’s currently rearing its wounded, worn out old head to fight for its increasingly-threatened life. The very same one that depends on our inability to see the true value of our investments, the importance of our unique work and perspectives, the legitimacy of our needs, and the extent of our ability to influence change, for its survival.
Dear mothers, we are the only ones worthy and capable of shifting our story. We know we are important. We know that our investments in our children, our homes, our workplaces, and our communities are essential to the change we wish to see.
We know it because we feel it as deeply as we feel anything.
When you respond to your baby’s sweet cues, you are not merely meeting her immediate needs for nourishment, you are shaping her most primal sense of security — the very same sense of security that will accompany her the rest of her life.
When you listen to his long-winded tales about superheroes and Minecraft, you’re not merely validating his interests, you are teaching him what it feels like to be heard and respected by someone who loves him deeply.
When you connect with your grandchildren, “spoiling” them in ways that only a grandma can, you are not merely doing your duty, but widening their circle of love, deepening their sense of belonging and speaking directly into the hearts of the emerging generation.
Every single time you tend a bloodied knee, handle a tantrum, help with homework, hold a broken heart, encourage outrageous dreams, set boundaries, or prioritize a need of your own, you are being given an opportunity to affect change. You are being invited to help heal the world.
No matter how little recognition we receive, we hold humanity together and we know it. But until more of us acknowledge, stand up for, and claim our worth, the emerging matriarchy doesn’t stand a chance against centuries-old wounded masculine consciousness, social structures, family dynamics, and cultural prioritization.
We are guardians of humanity’s well-being.
We are cultivators of compassion and courage and confidence.
We are nurturers of new life and big dreams and hungry souls.
We are vessels for and instruments of the sacred feminine, and better equipped than anyone throughout human history to make space for her much-needed emergence.
The other day, I came across yet another article suggesting a dozen or so things we should each be doing in order to topple Trump and turn this crazy train around. And once again, I sat there thinking, “Yes, okay, and an enormous piece of this puzzle is missing. This isn’t just about one sick man, it’s about loving this hurting nation back to health. I’m all for calling Congresspeople and writing postcards and becoming more involved in local activism and unification efforts. But it’s equally important that we not overlook the everyday actions, mindsets and consciousness that contribute as much or more to positive change as anything else.
You, dear mother, are doing so much good already. We don’t need you busier, we need you strong and well supported so that you can better lead us.
How do we step into the fullness of our power when our lives are so full already? How do we make the most of the little time and energy we have left to give? Here are a few ideas to get you started. (Your heart holds many, many more.)
Women are awakening en masse like never before. The sacred feminine has been summoned, and she’s not going back to sleep. How are you meant to embody her? What part will you play in the most powerful women’s movement in all of history?
We have only just begun to see ourselves for the world-changing, consciousness-shaping beings we are. Don’t stop now, sisters. We need you awake, we need you nourished, and we need you connected.
Humanity is in desperate need of what we’re best suited to give.
In awe of us all,
The mother in me asks, what if? What if this darkness is not the darkness of the tomb but the darkness of the womb? What if our America is not dead, but a country that is waiting to be born? What if the story of America is one long labor? What if all of our grandfathers and grandmothers are standing behind us now–those that have survived occupation and genocide, slavery and Jim Crow, detention and political assaults? What if they are whispering to us today, tonight: you are brave!? What if this is our nation’s great transition? ~Valeria Kaur
*Note: Only respectful comments are shared on this blog. Though I welcome thoughtful, kind arguments against my viewpoints, hateful, senseless and tastelessness comments will not be tolerated nor published.
**Photo credit goes to the amazing Jote Khalsa.