Eventually, we arrived at huge nursery. We left the car, met the wind and cold, and, hunching down and running, we slipped into the first greenhouse.
I think of the moms I see that remind me of myself back then. I see the vacant stare, the lifeless smile, the numb conversation of a mom who is just trying to get a warm shower and go to the bathroom without somebody crying. Beneath the exhaustion, the stained t-shirt, and the post-pregnancy figure, there’s a woman in there–vibrant, sassy, powerful. There’s something in her that wants to bloom.
If only she had a greenhouse–a little paradise to keep her safe and warm so she could grow too. If only we could create the conditions that help her put down strong roots, stretch high out, and bloom, bloom, bloom.
What does a mom need? She needs to be protected and nourished so she can fully develop into the woman she’s supposed to be. She needs friends who ask her about her ideas and her dreams; she needs a community who will spur her on and enable her to take risks in any direction she chooses. A mom needs people who don’t limit her scope, who don’t assume anything about her, and who recognize that she is a growing thing–like a tender vine in a greenhouse. Our children aren’t the only people that need to grow in our homes. Babies aren’t the only people that need swaddling.
If a mom doesn’t grow and ripen, she shrivels. Moms need communities that value her spiritual, physical, social, emotional, and (if she wishes) her professional growth.