Friday, March 4, 2011

Something to share

No work progress today, no pictures to show but something I want to share. I have said I have been going through a tough time but not shared details. I won't now either but I have shed a lot of tears lately. Tears of pain. But today, my aunt sent me an email that helped me so much and let me shed a few good tears and I wanted to share it with you. I cannot give the author credit because I don't know who it is but I think if your a mom this will touch your heart.

The Invisible Mom

It all began to make sense--the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids would walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not, no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking. or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible mom.
Some day's I am only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Someday's I'm not a pair of hands, I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it? I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel? I'm a taxi for order, Right around 5:30 please.
Some day's I'm a crystal ball, "Where's my other sock? Where's my phone? What's for dinner?
I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music, and literature- but now, they has disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. She had just returned from a fabulous trip and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when she turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package and said, "I brought you this". It was a book on the great Cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "With admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one see's"
In the day's ahead I would read-no-devour the book. And I would discover what would become for me four life changing truths, after which I could pattern my work.

1) No one can say who built the great cathedrals, we have no record of their names.

2) These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

3) They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

4) The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A story of legend in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof ? No one will ever see it. The workman replied "because God sees.

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does.
"No act of kindness you'be done, no sequin you'be sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, no Cub Scout meeting, no last minute errand is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great Cathdral, but you can't see right now what it will become.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.
The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.
When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friends he's bringing home for Thanksgiving, "My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, then she hand bastes the turkey for 3 hours and presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then , if there is anything more to say to his friend, he'd say "Your gonna love it there..."

As mothers, we are building great cathedral's. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at whate we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers.


  1. Deb, it sounds like you just described an everyday hero!

  2. Cindy I think that we need to remind ourselves, especially when things are looking down that we are everyday hero's, and when we forget which we usually do, someone finds a way to point it out to us.

  3. I love the analogy to building great work, for children are in fact an entire life's work. It's a beautiful story and I'm really glad your aunt shared it with you, and you with us. May your days become easier to bear.