I am a daughter! Yet somedays it is easier to be that daugher than other days. As many of you know who read this blog, I am a daughter of a woman who lives with a mental illness. She has taught me more about faith and life than I can even begin to tell you. She has never let her illness get in the way of who she is. She is the most faith-filled woman of God and has nurtured faith in both me and my sister.
Yet somedays it is harder for me to be the woman she has created me to be. Perhaps I am writing this blog post because that good ol’ Lutheran guilt has slipped in. But I really think I am writing it because I too am human. There are days that I find myself snapping back when she asks me the same question twice. Then within a moments notice, I realize that I snapped back. Today she called me as she does every Sunday and asked me if I preached. I told her no, but I know I said it rather quietly because I was in a major department store. She asked again and I said “No” again. It’s these little moments that make me realize that I am a sinner just like everyone of us is a sinner. And I wish I wouldn’t be so quick to react.God knows I love her with every fiber of my being just like she loves me and my sister with every fiber of her being. Yet it isn’t easy.
It isn’t easy being the daughter of someone who lives with a mental illness. There are days that I wish my parents wouldn’t have gotten divorced. There are days that I wish mental illness wasn’t part of what I am called to share and educate about in this world. There are days (probably more than I care to admit) when I ache, ache to have my mama whole; free from this illness. I wonder who will go wedding dress shopping with me when I finally find my Mr. Right. But then I remember that God gave her to me for a reason; to love and to cherish. I am reminded of these words, “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper and not to harm you; plans to give you a hope and a future.”—Jeremiah 29:11
When I snap back, my mom forgives me without a second thought. When I ache, God reminds me that I am not alone; that I am never alone. God reminds me every day of God’s gifts of grace. That gift of grace is continually shown to me through my mama. God’s grace is a gift that is freely given. And in that grace, God reminds me that we dont always understand why things happen in life but that God walks with us. God shows us daily what God’s love, grace, mercy and peace look like. And knowing this grace, may we all share that grace in the world.
I love my mama with all of my heart. Yet somedays it is easier to say I am her daughter. Growing up I have a feeling she probably said that about me and my sister somedays too yet she continued and continues to love us. So my friends….
I AM A DAUGHTER (a daughter of someone who daily lives with a mental illness)