I didn't know it would be like this. Motherhood. Wearing your heart exposed. I see the photos of Mary holding the Christ Child, her Immaculate heart exposed with a sword in it and I just get it.
Motherhood is like that. A heart on the outside, waiting to be pierced with both sorrows and joys.
Last night, I spent the evening reading a blog by a mother whose fourth pregnancy had a "poor prenatal diagnosis." She chose to carry her pregnancy to term and give birth to a daughter who lived for two and a half hours, a daughter who died on her birth day. I'm not a sentimental person. But I wept, wept at the photos of her tiny daughter, wept at the thought of losing my child, wept because throughout the world, there are mothers who lose their children every day.
Every six seconds, a child dies of hunger.
Every thirty seconds, a child dies of malaria.
Every eight seconds, a child dies of lack of water or a waterbourne illness.
Every three seconds, a child simply dies.
That's 20 children per minute, 1,200 per hour, 28,800 per day.
Those statistics should stun anyone. But it should especially stun us who are mothers. The mere thought of losing my child is enough to bring me to my knees in grief because I love her so much. And motherlove is the same across all languages and cultures. Every child on this planet--every person on this planet--is loved like I love my child. The thought of that much love is staggering.
That is over 28,000 women a day whose exposed hearts break as their beloved babies and children die in their arms, the sword piercing.
The thought of that much sorrow is staggering.