Anyone who lives or had lived in the countryside knows exactly the scheme of life’s waves. Someone gets married, five others decide to marry at the same time; someone gets robbed, five more too… I’m in a wave peak right now: the babies one. Family, friends, friends of friends: everyone decided to deliver a baby in the last months.
It’s inevitable to think back in the same stage of your life: the birth of other babies makes you to evaluate your own maternity. From these reflections, I ended up finding gratitude for the maternity itself. I may or may not have improved the mother or the woman I am, but it helped me to reevaluate my role as a daughter.
I wasn’t an easy daughter and I used to blame my parents for it. When my first daughter was born, I created this theory about maternity being a 50/50 relationship: 50 percent I’m being her mother, 50 percent she is teaching me to be her mother. This all felt very fair – and, let’s confess, less heavier – until I turned myself to the other side of the table and realized 50 percent of the blame I placed on my parents was on my account.
The act of maternity taught me to forgive. But, more than that, it taught me to ask for forgiveness, to reconcile with my past and to assume my responsibility for it. When a son/daughter is born, a mother/father is born too. This birth process happens at the same time, it is different for each kid and it has a lot of probabilities of mistakes. Thinking on it, I extended my “forgiveness exercise” to my kids. While doing so I realized all the times I asked them to forgive me I’m reducing my future account on it, but also I teach them about the fact I’m not mistakes free – and there are a lot of them.
One day I was browsing through art websites and found Ed Fairburn. I’m fascinated by cartography, but I wasn’t clear about the reason I loved his work so much. Then, when I was thinking about this post, I ended up with the conclusion that he helped me to see we aren’t a mystery — we come quite in a clear drawing.
But we like to hide our shameful sides to make ourselves important – nobody wants to admit they were a beggar on their regression. But if we really want to teach a special value to someone – our kids, especially – I believe it would be very productive to be example of our own reality and accept that we come with mistakes. We need to understand where they come from and try to be better. The rest is nothing but survival – sorry for the reality shock, new mothers and fathers, there’s no extra advice here.
PS: The illustration below was made on an astrological map, but Ed Fairburn does a lot of stuff in all kinds of maps with rivers, mountains, cities, etc. Click on his name, take a look and tell me if isn’t just amazing?