The Uncouth: The Hormonal
For the day after Mother’s Day, I remembered this, and thought of you out there, you who worry you don’t have the kind of grip you ought to have on the lives around you.
After every baby, a woman morphs into someone else entirely. Do not be surprised if her spiritual hair turns stark black as soot or red as molten steel. Do not be surprised if that hip she props the newest baby on causes her to feel unnaturally imbalanced so that in public places she follows sudden urges to slam her torso far to the side, trying to pop that crick out of her back. When she listens to music, it’s not like it used to be, making her sway and close her eyes all dreamy, but rather it’s an invisible crowbar, ripping open a teary fire-hydrant, sudden unrelated fears for your children. Instead of making a grocery list, she’ll note the things that could happen: spiders, amoebas, cancer, falling bridges, hippos and tigers (you know, escaped from the zoo), real pirates, whores, cannibals, and the worst – unbelief.
Lives in a woman’s hands, they are mountains in her heart. It’s a silly thing God asks them to do. Bear them, feed them, discipline them, teach them to love, and hand them over. Trade in the mountains for mustard seeds. Mary, no wonder we sing so many songs to you, bewildered as we are.