Among the bravest human beings on earth are the women who are willing to risk their own lives to bring a child into the world. It is the greatest sacrifice one person can make for another. It is the deepest form of love there is. A woman knows the dangers of delivery, as well as the struggles she will face as a mother. The knowledge that her child could be born with a physical or developmental disability is a fact of life that she must deal with. She also has to live with the realization that her own health is put at risk for nine months. But even though she is fully aware of all of these issues, she is still willing to risk everything for her precious child.
When a woman holds her baby for the first time she is completing the circle of love that enriches all humanity. The bond that is formed between mother and child cannot be broken, no matter what life brings. Even in death, there will remain the longing of one for the other through all eternity. A child who loses his mother is changed forever, and when a mother has a child die she experiences the greatest pain a human being can be forced to endure – but still the bond remains, unbroken and unending. The act of giving life to another person transcends all other human endeavors. Maternal love knows no bounds or restrictions. It does not ebb and flow as in other relationships. A mother’s unconditional love is the greatest gift a child can receive.
When a new mother looks into the face of her baby she sees the purity of humanity. She sees the hope of the future. She sees the very essence of love wrapped in a tiny bundle. It is a moment in time that defines us as compassionate beings that embrace and treasure the wonder of creation no matter how difficult the conditions may be that surround the birth. Our respect for each individual on earth must start the moment life begins, and it must continue to the end of the human experience. Love, respect, and dignity must be accorded to each child without exception because each new life adds to the rich tapestry of humanity in its own unique way. Each woman who selflessly gives her own body in the ultimate act of love deserves our greatest admiration.
The moment of birth should create a beautiful, wondrous connection between two human beings who will go on to share a relationship that is so special that neither will never be able to replace the other in their lives. That is why we have an obligation to protect both mother and child as they begin the journey of life. We owe them the chance to discover each other and to grow together. We must provide the opportunity for them to share their love and develop the special relationship that will remain with them throughout their lives.
A mother and child share a heartbeat forever. They will always be linked together in the ongoing chapters of their respective lives. When they are young, a son or daughter craves the attention of the one who gave them life. As they grow older, children learn their most important lessons from the person they trust more than anyone else in the world, and as they age they begin to truly appreciate the myriad of sacrifices she has made on their behalf.
Beginning with conception, and including the decision to continue the pregnancy, a woman makes a lifelong commitment to another human being who will be dependent upon her for their physical safety, as well as their emotional and mental health. As their children grow up, their unconditional love will never waver. They will support their sons and daughters no matter what issues they face. They will be living examples of commitment and dedication, and because there is no greater responsibility a person can assume than that of a mother, they deserve our highest respect.
In the eyes of every woman, her child is perfect. When she holds her newborn infant, the fact that it might have a disability has no effect on their eternal bond. Her devotion to her child is total and complete. She will move heaven and earth to see that her son or daughter has every opportunity they deserve to lead a full and meaningful life with dignity and respect. They will have incredible patience when milestones are delayed, and they will rejoice with every small step of progress that’s made. They will defend their child’s rights at all times, and they will not allow others to think of them as anything less than equal. They will be the greatest advocate their son or daughter will ever have.
I hope each one of you will take a moment to reach out and thank the person who loves you more than anyone else ever will. It doesn’t take that long or require that much effort to let your mother know how much you appreciate her and to tell her how much she means to you. But your words will have more impact than you can imagine because you are the one person in the world whose opinion of her matters the most. My own mother passed away more than forty years ago when I was a teenager, and I can no longer remember the sound of her voice. So please take every available opportunity to listen to your mother’s voice while you can. Believe me when I tell you that a mother’s love can never be replaced and that there will eventually come a day when you would give almost anything to have one more chance to tell her how much you love her.
Motherhood is living proof that the true measure of a human being is the willingness to sacrifice for another.
We must never take our mothers for granted because we each owe them our lives.