A Tribute to my Mother

My mother and father with my wife and I at our wedding in 2006.

My mother and father with my wife and I at our Montsalvat wedding in 2006.

Today is Mother’s day. This is a day to focus our gratitude and love on the one person that gave us life, that nurtured and protected us.

My mother was a young woman when I was born. She was one only a few hours shy of twenty infact, and when the nurses gave me to her they sand her happy birthday at the same time.

She had come through one of the biggest days of her life. The labour itself lasted over 19 hours, and she had given birth to a big baby. Hard work for a small body. By all accounts I was pretty reluctant to come into the world. I was one month overdue, and even then I had to be pulled out.

I recently talked to my mother about this, and it was only in talking to others that I started to appreciate what she had been through. Talking to her though, you’ll mainly hear an account that is full of love, rather than suffering – in fact that doesn’t even get a mention. This is not an uncommon story. In fact so far I’ve never met a mother who emphasises the suffering of giving birth. Their focus is always on their love for their newborn  child.

So when I think of motherhood I think of courage, focus, determination, and love. In this one experience the mother provides a powerful model and this alone is something to be immensely grateful for. They remind us that through great pain is the creation of something extraordinary. But the story itself is not one of pain, rather it is a story of creation. They approach this experience knowing how difficult it probably will be and yet the desire to bring a new life into being instills the body and spirit with great courage,  focus, and determination. Of course this is how I see it as a man. I’m sure a woman, better still a mother, would see it in different terms.

I’ve spent half my life looking for teachers. I’ve travelled into the heart of the Himalayas, and devoted my life to study of ancient texts in order to learn about life. But I had missed one teacher that was here all the time.

In my mother, I have discovered an inspiring model of transformation. A hero, no less.

So I want to dedicate this to my mother, Jude. Thankyou. I love and honour you.


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