Breastfeeding: Nursing Mothers’ Reflections on the Beatitudes

5. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

Lord, our home is in turmoil right now. Our teen is most blunt about his extreme dislike for us, his parents. We are terribly hurt by his behavior. I know our situation is not unusual. I hear from my friends and acquaintances that their older children run all over them. Why do older children behave this way? Why are they so disrespectful of their parents? These children all come from good Catholic homes. When I expressed displeasure about our child without getting into any details, my friend simply said, “I know. I’ve been there. I know the feeling.” Her words showed she understood and I felt better. Another friend who was having a bad time with her daughter said to me, “I didn’t know it could hurt so much.” Sometimes the hurt can be so painful that you just want to throw in the towel. It gets to be pretty discouraging. Who would ever think that your command to love our enemies would apply to our own children.

I know of many situations, Lord, where you sent relief because of my prayer. Thank you. I have also found the sacrament of confession so helpful in erasing any grudge or despair I might have with regard to any of my children. Or during confession the priest offers spiritual advice that I need at the time. Sometimes during my confession I unexpectedly start to cry, but I am sure other mothers have done this too. I thank you for helping me to forget the past and to learn to love my children when they’re not very lovable. Forgiveness is so necessary in family life, but it can also be most difficult.

I have nursed all our babies and have thoroughly enjoyed their years at home. The bonding that begins through the breastfeeding has been a big help, but I soon learned that the bonding and communication and love has to be achieved in other ways as the children grow.

Lord, raising our children during the early years was easy. Their needs were so basic: food, comfort, and love. Please give my husband and me the graces to continue loving each child, even when it gets difficult. As they leave home, help us to keep up the communication with our children. Thank you, Lord, for your forgiveness in the sacrament of confession and help us to forgive others whenever we are injured…no matter how badly we feel. I thank you also, Lord, for time. With time, all things seem to be much better. Emotions heal with time. New activities and events take place. Family life has a chance to be renewed. Thank you, Lord. (anonymous mother)
(Sheila Kippley, 2005)

(A 30% discount is now offered on all Kippley print books at lulu through August 7 in recognition of NFP week and World Breastfeeding Week.  In addition, Sophia is offering a 25% discount on Breastfeeding and Catholic Motherhood through August 7.  The code for this discount is “motherhood.” Ignatius Press is offering Sex and the Marriage Covenant for only $6.00 through August 31.))

Comments are closed.