Dedicated to the women who’ve lost a child and to the women who share the burden of loss. To the women of soldiers and to the women soldiers. To the women who pray and to the women who ask for a prayer.
Mother: she is the anchor in your ocean, while you the child is her buoy.
As I look around me today, I am in awe of mothers. The act of mothering — all that women “do” as mothers to manifest love, care, and sacrifice — is more profound than anything I’ve ever witnessed before. I’ve watched mothers dancing with their children when they hear a good tune. I’ve seen mothers dropping everything to comfort a child when he’s sad. I’ve seen mothers sing out loud “Let It Go” with a daughter who won’t let it go. I’ve watched mothers help build towers with Duplo blocks, Legos and Magna Tiles. I’ve watched mothers who’ve watched their children adding piece after piece with no particular design except to see how high they can build with not much concern for stability or even a vision of calamity. Pretty soon, the monumental tower they build will defy gravity and topple over with the addition of one or two more pieces. It will fall and smash into smithereens. I’ve watched mothers straighten the pieces, work to fix it, building stronger foundations, adding a piece here and there, providing a supporting block where it leans, strengthening the structure, all in order to keep that tower from tumbling for as long as they can….to prevent the calamity…the disaster of when it will hit the floor, shattering their world.
Yesterday, when my children were still children, when they understood more about the world in which buildings were not made out of colorful blocks to be constructed in minutes, and where anything that crumbled could be reassembled after a few tears, I spoke of war. I spoke of how, having seen what war can do to families, to neighbors and neighborhoods, to loved ones, to mothers who beat their chest in anger and pain, whose dry eyes begged to rest in sorrow too deep to understand, I spoke of condemning war. As a mother, I spoke of turning my back to politics, politicians and the big money that drives us into a war. I spoke of peace, of art, of knowledge and evolving the best of human elements. I spoke of creating armies of musicians, artists and teachers. I spoke of their unequivocal right to do whatever they must to serve humankind.
Today, I’ve watched mothers making every effort to stay ahead of their children as they build for their freedom and their rights to live on their lands. I’ve seen the fortitude of mothers holding the fort for as long as they can, to keep that tower from tumbling, to do what they have to do to bring their sons and daughters back home. And even though they don’t believe in war and the politics or the money that drives it, their beliefs are suspended because their daughter or son is duty bound to serve and protect. On the battlefield and in war zones, these brothers and sisters are sons and daughters of every mother who has anchored a child. That child, that buoy attached to the anchor is her day and her night; her motivation, her love, her pain, her discipline, her kindness, patience, her anger, her fears and her prayers. That child, that armed son and daughter, that soldier is doing whatever s/he must to serve humankind.
I’ve watched these mothers of soldiers whose towers have tumbled. Their monuments cannot be reconstructed or put together again with a few tears. I’ve watched mothers who’ve lost a child in service to country, for freedom for humankind. These are the mothers with whom we are ready to absorb their haunting fear, their wounded rage, and their hollow glare, and fill their starving hearts with the love of our tears, with respect for their fortitude, and with gratitude for their monumental sacrifice.
I’ve watched mothers….