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I’m the Mother
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If I had a dollar for every time I said that to my daughter … . She was an easy-going happy child, but with a mind of her own that sometimes got her in trouble. Joelle “knew” how things should be done” and if her little brother didn’t toe her line, she’d correct him. That’s when I’d say, “I’m the mother.“

Now that she has three children. with a little girl much like she was, Joelle can be heard saying the same thing to 4-year-old Kira. But I never imagined she’d say it to me. In June, we planned a trip together. From Phoenix, Joelle and I and my five grandchildren (her three and my son’s two) headed to Flagstaff, camped in a yurt, toured the Grand Canyon and Sedona, rode horses, floated on a river, and hiked.

It may have been the heat or the 7,000-foot elevation, but each evening I could barely move and sometimes apologized for not helping much. That’s when I heard, “I’m the mother.” She said it again the next day when I needed assistance over big boulders. In my pride, I apologized again. She smiled and said that it was the first time she’d ever helped me with anything and was glad to do it.

Give Me a Hand

It’s a fact of life that roles often become reversed as the nurturer, the mother, becomes the one being cared for by her children, but I’m resistant. I’m certainly not ready for a full-time caregiver, but I admit that I occasionally need help — but I’m reticent to ask. Is it pride? Fear that I’ll be turned down or resented? A friend told me that I’m denying my children a blessing when they give me a hand.

I don’t know about that, but. I do know that the Bible is specific about honoring our elders/parents: Exodus 20:12 and Leviticus 19:32. There’s also the example of Jesus. While on the cross, he asked John to care for his mother Mary. Clearly this indicated that, had he remained on earth, his mother was a priority.

So, it’s biblical and it’s probably inevitable. May I accept whatever comes my way with love, thankfulness and grace.

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By Dee Litten Reed. Copyright © 2015 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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