Suffering with Our Mother


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May 9  

There is nothing with which to compare the ache in a mother’s heart when she sees her child being bullied or excluded. For me, it was when my daughter was almost three and still in diapers. She was wanting to play with some kids at the park, and they kept saying, “No. You’re a diaper baby.” I can still see her innocent face looking at me with so much confusion, asking, “Mommy, why are they doing that?” Another time, my three-year-old son (who is on the autism spectrum) was at the park, and some older kids kept taking his little toy train that he was very fixated on at the time. They were laughing at how much he wanted it back whenever they took it from him.

Mothers experience so many emotions during moments like those—hurt, sadness, anger. As mothers we want to protect our children from any physical or emotional hurt at any cost to ourselves. If I could, I would keep their world perfect and simple forever. I would never let them bump their heads or scrape their knees, and every child at the park would be begging to be their best friend.

Our Blessed Mother was no different in these motherly instincts. Can you imagine those instincts kicking in while she watched her bloody, beat-up son stumbling down the streets of Jerusalem under a heavy cross, all while people mocked and hit him? Give me the playground any day compared to that. Remember, in those moments when we as mothers are given heavy crosses to bear that our Blessed Mother knows the weight of our suffering, and that she is begging to help us carry these crosses.

Whenever our child is suffering, be it the pain of being excluded, the pain of a broken arm, or the pain of not making a sports team—these are all sufferings for a mother’s heart. We can bring these aches and trials to our Blessed Mother and ask her to help us endure the trial and grow in our journey of motherhood through it. Our Lady had to watch Jesus suffer on the road to Calvary, but we all know the immense glory that came from that difficult walk he took. Our Lord wants to bring joy though our suffering as well, and there is no better shoulder to lean on in our walk of motherhood than that of his own mother, Mary.

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