Motherhood is the greatest role in the history of humankind. Mother Mary showed us that in one quick “Yes” to accepting the Christ child.
The featured photo presents just a quick glimpse of motherhood, but it ranks as perhaps my favorite photo of all time, and I’m not the kind of person to be quick to say such things. Here’s a list of the reasons why:
My wife is beautiful beyond beautiful here.
She has comforted Leo to fall asleep in the only position he has been able to sleep at times: pressed against mama’s chest in a baby carrier.
Leo’s head is spilling out of the carrier, almost horizontal to the bed. Being this close to mama, he releases all the tension in his body.
She is dressed in a manner solely in service of another human being: everything she wears these days is loose for skin-to-skin contact or so Leo can quickly access his nourishment.
Her breast pump (black box) is tipped open at arms length upon rolled-back bedsheets, hinting at evidence of recent use.
Her own sustenance—coffee and snacks—sits apart from her, but gives an indication to the season of life she must endure that doesn’t allow for long sit-down meals and other comforts of home.
She is sitting on a bed, lurched forward with intention. She is studying for the bar exam, pursuing the fullness of her dignity while giving evidence of her excelling intellect and tenacity, even amid the task of being sole comforter for Leo in that moment.
The three-panel mirror is part of a dresser that was her Oma’s (German word for grandmother). It is an old, ornate piece. It speaks of that generations of motherhood’s fruitfulness and sacrifice that eventually brought us here. In this photo, the mirror produces the panel-effect of classical artwork, displaying the various sides of a scene. It gives a slightly different look of my wife in each panel, giving the viewer an opportunity to experience the three-dimensional fullness of both the scene and her character.
This is what I witness every night in one form or another. She reveals the grace called motherhood to me every night. Her life is a constant “yes”.
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