Mamas on Bedrest: Gratitude Begins With Receiving Graciously

November 25th, 2010

For many Mamas on Bedrest, this may have been a very different Thanksgiving experience. Instead of traveling to be with friends and family or preparing a succulent turkey dinner with all of the trimmings, this year you find yourself  sidelined from all of the holiday preparations and perhaps a reluctant recipient of holiday cheer. It’s okay, go ahead, take it all in. Sit back and relax and graciously receive all the blessings of kindness and support bestowed upon you for Mamas on Bedrest, gratitude begins with receiving graciously.

Our culture does not advocate dependency in any form. From an early age we are taught to “handle our business” and to “pull ourselves up by our own boot straps”. Yet our inherent nature as human beings is to be in community, to draw upon the resources of one another and to help one another in times of need. Is it any wonder that we are confused?

For women it can be even more confusing. As young girls (at least in my case) we are told that we can be anything that we want to be, that the world is our oyster. At the same time we are reminded that we had better hurry up and get married and have a family before its too late. In either case, the expectation is that we will handle both roles with seamless aplomb. So what a blow to our egos and personal sense of competency when things don’t go as planned, i.e. we become pregnant and end up on bed rest. But I was reminded yesterday that every cloud has a silver lining. I was also reminded that before we can be grateful for anything, we have to be able to receive said thing and to receive it graciously.

I received a gentle reminder of this exactly one week ago on my birthday. I attended an evening gathering with a group of mama friends. After introducing myself briefly as we do, one of the other mamas piped up that it was my birthday and started the entire crowd of about 40 mamas singing “Happy Birthday” to me. My first instinct was to tell them to stop. It felt really weird to be put in the spotlight like that. But then I caught myself. These ladies are my support system and many have become cherished friends. Why was I having such a hard time accepting their well wishes? So I stood for the moment and allowed them to sing to me and accepted, with great thanks and heartfelt gratitude, their hugs and well wishes.

Mamas on Bedrest I hope you’ve had a happy Thanksgiving despite the fact that you are on prescribed bed rest. I hope that you were able to enjoy the day and to receive all the love and support brought to you. I hope that you were able to enjoy the love and fellowship of your family if they came to you and either brought or prepared a delicious meal. I hope that you were able to receive a dinner with all of the trimmings and enjoy it in the spirit of love and community with which it was given if from friends, neighbors and church family. And if it was just you and your sweetie, I hope that the  two of you made loving memories that you will one day share with your precious little one.

Mamas on Bedrest I hope that you have received all the love, warmth and support that you have been given. Bed rest be damned, it has still been a great day for which to give thanks.

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