The definition of love

12 May, 2019 - 00:05 0 Views

The Sunday Mail

Epiphania Gano

Right from the womb, an amazing bond is built between a child and his or her mother. The umbilical cord is the lifeline that attaches the two.

Yet, years after it is cut off, that connection continues to hold strong.

That sweet voice you hear as she sings allow you to drift to sleep. Soon it will start to instruct you on what to do and not to do in life. It will soon start to reprimand you when you start to stray from the right path. Very soon, it will cheer you on when you get it right.

Mothers are our biggest fans, our loudest cheerleaders, always believing in us.

ln times of distress, a child clings to mother even if she cannot do anything to ease the pain. That ever-loving woman is always encouraging her children to face life’s challenges head on.

Just a few words from her and the tears dry up. It is as if her words of encouragement are magical.

Mothers from across the world have one thing in common – they have a fierce and deep love for their children. Being the heart of the family, they make their children feel safe.

Mothers sacrifice their own comforts for the sake of their offspring. In fact, it seems as if every woman is born with a deep innate longing to take care of the next person.

While the greatest blessing for any woman is to bring life into this world, the greatest blessing for any person is to experience a mother’s love. Sadly, not everyone gets to receive these two blessings.

It is very unfortunate that some sections of society look down upon the barren woman. Our Ubuntu as African people dictates that even a childless woman is still a mother in the community.  Children are a gift from God and we should not victimise the barren woman or the one who is bearing girls only.

This Mother’s Day, let us remember that it is God who grants us the ability to conceive and to bear children, whether male or female. Our culture as a people needs to appreciate this.

Let us remember what the mothers have to go through during those nine months as they endure the morning sickness, the backaches and the labour.

Let us remember that motherhood is not defined by the sex of the child. We need to embrace both male and female children and realise that they have equal rights.

This Mother’s Day, let us celebrate all the mothers who love and are devoted to their physically challenged children. Let us be reminded that these mothers are not to blame for their children’s disabilities. It was not their choice for their child to be born with autism (a disorder still largely unknown and misunderstood in Zimbabwe), for their child to be born deaf and dumb, blind or with deformed limbs.

Rather, they received those special gifts from God.

The mothers being celebrated today are those who have put up a brave fight for the comfort of their children.

Recently, a mother lost her deaf and dumb child after giving her a concoction from a healer who had promised to restore her child’ speech and hearing. Deaf people do have a voice and their mothers require adequate support structures so that they do not fall into the same trap.

It is obvious that this mother had on countless occasions heard her child being ridiculed for her condition.

When a mother loses her child, the Bible says she refuses to be consoled because they are no more. Only a mother can explain the gut-wrenching feeling of that loss. When Mary lost Jesus by his death on the cross, it was like a sword had pierced her heart.

A sword pierces a mother’s heart at the loss of a child because of the love they have for them. Even though she may have other children, they cannot replace that particular one, for every child is different and special in their unique way.

Today, we celebrate a mother who has lost a child. We celebrate you because your heart continues to love that child and you continue to be a fountain of love for those around you. Many times, we might have failed to understand the ache you carry in your heart as you hide it from us and shed tears privately. However, we feel your pain.

May you draw strength from the embraces of those around you as you stand at the grave of her child, husband or mother. As women, we will comfort you as we shed tears of comradeship and sisterhood. In time, you too will be able to take another woman by the hand and walk this journey with her.

Yet it is even more painful when a child loses their mother, nothing can ever prepare them for that fateful day. That love affair that started in her womb through the umbilical cord continues as she cuddles you during feeding time and bath time. That love affair never dims with time. Instead, the bond grows stronger.

The depths of despair that one falls into are unexplainable. Even though l saw my mother slowly fading away, l still held on to the hope that she would live. I could not let go.

Though l saw her slipping away, l clung to her with all the fierce love l could master. Unfortunately, she had to depart from this world on May 12th, 2017.

It was a day before Mother’s Day. I had to place the flowers l would have given her on her grave. She left before she could open the Mother’s Day card. “World’s greatest mum,” it read.

l remember vividly, she was always there for me. l remember she kept on loving life until the very end, she would not want me to do any less. I know that she is looking down from heaven and l want her to be proud of me.

This Mother’s Day, I celebrate all mothers, our heroes who continue to love us even when loving hurts. They continue to believe in us even when the world has written us off.

Your love is the greatest gift to every child.

To the single mums, your work is amazing, you get to do it all on your own, and though the burden is heavy, somehow you find the strength to carry on. May we lend a helping hand, for it takes a whole village to raise a child.

Happy Mother’s Day to you who chose to have that baby and did not abort.

To those whose mothers are still alive, pick up the phone, call her and tell her you love her and that you are grateful for all she has done for you. Take a day off and visit her.

Take her for a photo shoot and enjoy some lunch together.

Buy her a bouquet of flowers. Take her on that holiday with your family. Do all the things you will wish you had done for her when she is gone. Do not leave unsaid all the words you will wish you had told her when she is gone. Do it today!

Happy Mothers Day!

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