In the bleak days of the winter of 1980, scared and totally unprepared, I awaited the arrival of my first and only child. I never planned on being a mother. That was for other women, certainly not me. I had chosen a life of travel and adventure, and frowned upon the parochial life of a suburban mom.
I went kicking and screaming into motherhood, but in time joyfully accepted my job as nurturer, teacher and role model to a little boy who stole my heart.
In the days leading up to my son’s birth I agonized over what type of mother I wanted to be. I didn’t want to make the same mis-steps my parents made with me. I vowed I would tell my child, he was loved every day, and I would encourage him to dream big. I was raised with limitations all around me, closing off a world of dreams. I taught my son he could be whatever he wanted to be, while remaining kind, considerate and compassionate.
Wanting to reinforce these intentions for my unborn child, I started a needlepoint with a theme I loved – animals. The subject etched into the needlepoint’s canvas was Noah’s Ark, a story of unwavering faith and gratitude. My idea was to stitch a canvas of hopes and dreams. Each animal, held a key value that I wanted to impart to my child: the lion represented courage, the elephant, wisdom and strength, and giraffe taught resourcefulness and intuition. Stitch by stitch my intentions were sewn firmly put in place. In the final days of my pregnancy, I hung the canvas of intentions on his nursery wall.
Now 36 years later, I have dug out that same needlepoint from my box of memorabilia, cleaned it off, and will present it to my son, and his beautiful pregnant wife, due this September.
The energy of intentions that have been stitched into this needlepoint are still palpable. As I pass this embroidery on to my first grandchild, may he be guided by Noah’s determination and the wisdom of these powerful totem animals. May he be strong, patient, resilient, creative and filled with passion.
May this piece also remind my son that all our lives are interwoven, it is that connectedness that is the fiber of our very existence.
Live in color,
Happy Mother’s Day