MOTHER TO MOTHER-THE COMPASSION CARD
Being a mother, you just know mothers. You get them. Because you’ve been there. And luckily I have a few mothers who are dear friends who I confide in and they confide in me, in the daily struggle, the heartbreak and the glory of motherhood. But every once in a while, I am stunned by the beauty and the grace, of the woman I don’t know, who graciously hands me her compassion. I call it the mother to mother compassion card. And let me tell you mamas, it’s everything. And for what it’s worth, here’s why.
The other day when I picked up my twin toddlers from pre-school, one of the mothers who I barely know asked if she could help me to my car with my son. She knew I had a bad back and well, after pick up, the twins are still sleepy and fussy. They screamed and clung to my legs as we walked out and this mother said to me, “Can I help out at all? I can carry one if you need.” Already mortified because this is month 7 of pre-school and yes they are still crying, I kindly said, “No, it’s ok but thank you. They just want me to hold them but I can’t so they must deal with it!” We continued to walk into the rainy and wet parking lot and one of the twins fell down and she said, “Here, let me. It’s ok if he cries, let me get you to the car.” Relieved, I said thank you and we got them in the car and I went on my way.
The next day in the mail was a handwritten card (yes millennials, they do exist) and it was from this pre-school mom. She simply said I just want you to know how much my daughter loves playing with your boys and how sweet they are. She also went on to say how wonderful of a job I’m doing and despite the difficult task of twin-momming, she said she always notices that I have a giant smile on my face at drop off and pick up that shows an enormous amount of love and gratitude for my boys. She then went on to say that she is happy to help walk the boys to the car every day if I need to. And that motherhood takes a village and she is always happy to help in any way she can.
I literally started crying.
It takes courage to have compassion. To not only recognize that we can share humanity with others, but to approach without judgement. When this happens, miracles happen. People feel human. People feel whole. And that is a winning combo.
This morning not only do I feel human, I feel whole. I feel like not only did this woman get me, but she stuck her neck out to lend compassion combined with wit and gumption. And even as I sit here remembering yesterday walking out of pre-school with two crying toddlers because they didn’t get their nap out and just about every mother looked at me with that “I’m so sorry look”, I walked with pride and gratitude for knowing that everything is going to be ok. Because not only do I believe so, but somebody else does too. Another mother.
In this day and age where people seldom write hand written notes “just because”, I realized that the gesture was not only so utterly compassionate and beautiful, but it represents the simple art form of kindness. It goes a long way. Especially in motherhood. And this kind of gesture spreads like wildfire. It makes me want to do more for others. To offer my hand more to others. To offer compassion everywhere I see it. Because you know, the world could use your kindness. And if a little bit goes a long way, like mother to mother, and the compassion card ends up in your mailbox unexpectedly, or at the pre-school parking lot, or at the grocery in aisle 7, you might just wake up the next day feeling whole. Like dang, I am doing a great job and I can do this. And believe me, that encouragement goes a long long way. P.S. thanks Fiona’s mommy. You made my day.