By Bernadette Joy Graham, MA, LPCC, CCHt
Licensed Mental Health Therapist
The Truth Contributor
If you were born a female there is a high probability that you may one day become a mother by giving birth to a child. Some women born female may decide not to give birth to a child or they may have a medical condition that prevents them from conceiving, carrying or giving birth. Additionally, the women who can conceive, carry a child and give birth may decide not to keep the child by giving it up for adoption or being a surrogate for those who are unable or who do not want to carry the child themselves.
Society has placed so many roles on individuals throughout time such as little girls play with baby dolls and little boy play with fire trucks. Or the color pink denotes girls and the color blue denotes boys. Are little girls playing with baby dolls supposed to prepare them for one day becoming a mother? Are little boys playing with fire trucks prepared to choose a career field mostly dominated by men?
In 2023, many of us can look back in time and see the patterns but today we have men caring for children and women putting out fires. As long as the job at hand is done with much success does it really matter who does what? Yes, there are some limitations, men cannot or will not ever be able to conceive, carry or give birth to a child regardless of the many surgeries being carried out all over the world.
Each of us have/had a mother and a father. It would be fantastic if we could all be raised in a two-parent home full of love and support that teaches each child how to carry out their future relationship as a two-parent home, with love and support but we all know that is not the case. Many children have no clue who their parents are even after looking at one’s birth certificate, the mother’s name will always be listed but the father will either be left blank or read unknown.
Once we are born unto this earth, our destinies really depend on a number of factors; factors that will often be spoke as “you have to deal with the hand you were dealt.” A child just wants and needs love. Someone who says they are proud of them and teaches them right from wrong and displays positive behaviors such as the importance of education.
May is the month of the celebrated Mother’s Day. While not everyone has a mother who is still living, or who raised them up to be decent and kind human beings, who fed them, clothed them and taught them strength and protected them until it was time to leave the nest. Many had someone if they were lucky that filled that role whether it was a man, an aunt, a foster care parent, an adopted parent, grandma, big mama, sister, brother, or just a caring person who brought them into their home that is mother to that child and did their best to ensure that child had a chance to be the best they could.
Take a mental health moment to think about the cards in your hand. Did you get a good spread or did you shake your head and say “oh this is gonna be rough” Regardless of who “mother” was to you say thank you if not more. It may not be the woman who conceived, carried and gave birth but an individual who carried out the role of a real mother. They sacrificed out of the love and kindness of their heart to make sure a child did not become a statistic, a child who grew into an adult who never felt the love, the protection and safety of someone they could count on regardless of the DNA or bloodline.
There are more children than there are “mothers” in the world in which we live. When my own mother died when I was 14, a woman whom I had never met before and never saw again said “honey find all the good people you can in your life, learn their ways, and take cover under their protection as much as you can but most importantly allow them to teach you strength because there are snakes everywhere and while they can only protect you for so long, that strength will show you a snake a mile away, and take out that snake before it gets to you.
To all the Mothers, regardless of how you look, your age, your gender, your flaws, your finances or mistakes who has taken the time to strengthen a child….Happy Mother’s Day to you! There is not a more difficult job on this earth than being a mother. May you be blessed, cherished and loved for all the days of your life. I am a very proud and great mother of two boys. I know the pains, the worry and the sacrifices made being in position of a mother. So, mother’s get out your capes this month and wear them with pride because you are super heroes with the greatest powers on earth.
Bernadette Graham is a Licensed Professional Clinical Mental Health Counselor, Accepting new clients ages 13 and older. Contact 419 409 4929.