What a poor world it would be if everyone put their own personal safety, security and selfish advancement first and last – if no one was prepared to go beyond themselves. It is always because people have been prepared to forget self–interest that the most precious things humanity possesses have been born. Mothers give us that example.
We like to think of the gift of life and the caring we have had from our mothers. It comes to mind at times when our concern for their welfare is most urgent. As they age we journey with them to live fully and fruitfully and to realize their full potential. Sometimes this is challenging and we may choose not to move into a caring situation. Or we can; we have a bond that moves us forward.
We may live longer if we take things easy, if we sit at the fire and carefully manage life. We will exist longer. But will we live longer?
To care for our mothers we must expect to change a little. We learn to pass from one stage of life to another, something in us dies and something new is born. It is in getting out of ourselves, in dedicating ourselves to her and beyond ourselves, that we grow and become most effective. We can ditch selfishness and pretence and create something new. We can hope, we can reflect and we can overcome. We learn to love ourselves and forget our bad days. It is when we forget ourselves that we are most free and most happy.
Our mother gave us a very clear model of selfless love. She gave us life. She didn’t find it easy. She knew many challenges and she knew all the negative emotions that come with them. And she passed on to us in the next generation the knowledge of how to take our own selflessness to the next level. Think of the seedling she nurtured and let spring new shoots with vigor, while all the time giving of her own self in every way she could to make it happen.