(Photo: This is my own beautiful mom pictured with my daughter Madeline.)
God’s providence never ceases to amaze me. He continues to put amazing Catholic moms in my life who inspire me and make me feel confident in my chosen vocation as mother and wife. Two such moms also happen to be writers who have not only encouraged me in my motherly role but also have been there for me as a writer who’s trying to carve out a niche in faith-based markets.
Heidi Saxton is the editor of “Canticle: The Voice of Women of Grace.” She has given me several opportunities to write for “Canticle,” but she’s also gone above and beyond the call and duty of editor by taking the time to email me with tips and guidance on how to break into Catholic markets. Heidi is a wonderful editor and writer and also an adoptive mother who shares spiritual and practical parent nuggets on various websites. I invite you to read her column at CatholicMom.com or peruse her blog on adoptive and foster parenting at mommymonsters.blogspot.com/.
Just recently I worked up a nerve to contact another Catholic mom and writer whom I admire. Danielle Bean is the senior editor of “Faith & Family” magazine. She also maintains a wonderful blog at www.daniellebean.com. Her writing is down-to-earth and oftentimes witty yet also a beautiful expression of her strong faith. Oh and did I mention that she homeschools and has eight children? To me, a 20-something just beginning my mothering journey, she is a Super Mom. I told her so much in my recent email and asked how she manages to seemingly do it all. While I hoped to hear from her via email at some point, I never expected a personal phone call in which she listened to my breathless rambling about mothering and writing and then reassured me that falling into the rhythm of motherhood takes time and gaining the courage to branch out and pursue other passions (like writing) is a slow process. However, what touched me most of all is when she said, “Even if you never do anything else other than be a mom and wife, you’re doing exactly what God intended you to do.” I know this in my heart, but it’s nice to hear it from others every once in awhile. Admittedly, I sometimes feel it’s not enough these days to “just” be a mom. I feel like if I’m not a humanitarian, published author, marathon runner, sensitive wife and uber mom, I’m falling short. But the truth is, being a loving wife, raising children and sharing our faith with our families is often a lesson in Christ-like sacrificial love and one way to help build God’s kingdom here on earth.
Of course, there are countless other godly women who have helped me to grow in my faith and more secure in my vocation – from some of closest friends to moms I’ve met in Familia (a national apostolate of Catholic laity committed to the well-being of the family) and in my Totus Tuus Catholic homeschooling group. Then there’s my own mom. I’ve often told her she’s an earthly angel, always watching out for others. She’s never had a traditional career other than a stint as an outreach coordinator at her church, but the fruit of her “work” as a wife, mom, grandmother and volunteer is bountiful.
So thank you, Mom, Heidi, Danielle, and all the other amazing Catholic women in my life! You make me proud to be a Catholic mama!