On this, the 4th Sunday of Advent, we are all reminded of the beautiful gift of Mary to us all. Her acceptance of God's will, her belief that her child was the Messiah, and her glorious birth and motherhood to Our Saviour has made her the role model of all role models. She is mother to ALL of us.
In my parish, the priest has a different person light the Advent candle each Sunday. That person represents that "part" of the congregation. For example, a child, a senior citizen, etc. And guess who lit it today? You guessed it. A mother.
And the priest made very sure to preface the lighting of the candle this week as, "Since this week we put our focus back to Mary and her motherhood to Jesus, we will have a MOTHER from our parish light the Advent candle today."
I was pre-occupied with my thoughts for the remainder of the Mass... which was the entire Mass, since the lighting of the candle happens before the entrance hymn. I just couldn't figure out, where do WE belong, and how are WE to emulate Mary? Clearly by accepting God's will we are acting like Mary. But we're the only ones who recognize that - it's not like society looks at us infertiles and says, "Oh, look how like Mary they are!" Nope. Rather, they are busy oohing and aahing over the mommies and babies of the congregation, because even the Church agrees, nothing's better than being a mommy at Christmastime.
I haven't been as depressed as I usually am this time of year, and I think I owe that to my Secret Prayer Buddy. I do have hope that I will be a mommy someday. (Don't ask me why. When I physically CANNOT implant without twice daily injections, and Natural Killer cells and a 1/2 DQ Alpha match); not to mention I just got an email from our Social Worker (though I'm not really sure I can still call her "our" Social Worker since she's not really working socially on our behalf at all) that stated we need to meet with her and the BRANCH EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR to determine whether or not we CAN continue with the homestudy. Logically, I know it's a long-shot that I'll ever be a mother. But it's not the logic I'm going off of. It's the calling. I have felt the calling to motherhood so strongly, especially recently. And even if it takes 20 years, I know we'll get to parenthood.
One day, some day, I will be homestudy approved, and oh what a glorious day that will be!! And I imagine, too, that I'll have a lot more peace with everything once that day arrives. It'll be my Golden Ticket, and by golly, I'm just gonna buy every freaking Wonka bar I can get my hands on in order to get that Golden Ticket.
While my priest and my parish may see me and my husband as worthless right now, I'm tired of seeing myself that way.
And even though on the outside, the "mother" of our Church who lit the candle may seem more obviously to be like Mary, I know we are all given the opportunity to be like her in our lives. To trust that what God has asked of you IS what is best for you, despite how contrary it is to everything you planned for yourself... well, that is just what Our Lady did. I hope and pray that I, (and that all of us) are able to emulate Our Lady as a mother, one day... but in the meantime, I will seize any opportunity I can get to be like Mary.
I used to constantly be upset at God for not allowing me to serve Him the way I thought I could serve Him best: by raising children to adore and worship Him. But just because I cannot do that doesn't mean I have to sit around and wait to serve Him. Right now, I can emulate Mary by trusting and hoping. And maybe no one else will see it but me... maybe no outsider will see the merits of what I am doing, and how I am serving the Lord in my childlessness. But the only One who matters will certainly see it, and I hope that He will be pleased.
God knows. He knows I hurt. He knows I ache. He knows I yearn. No angel ever came to deliver my infertility to me, but I still have the opportunity to respond to this gift God has entrusted to me. Some days the response is not as favorable as others. But today, and for as long as I can, my response will be:
"Let it be done to me according to your word."