What If I Were a Ukranian Mother?


I wrote this on February 24 as the news of the Russian invasion of Ukraine reached around the world. My mind and heart continues to feel grief, sadness, and helplessness as the news grows worse. I am heavy hearted. The following was originally posted as a microblog of sorts on our social media pages (Facebook and Instagram) quite honestly for a way to express what filled my thoughts and emotions. It was received well by many other mothers joining our collective mothers’ hearts together, acknowledging the reality for women just like us but who live in a different geographic place. Given that, we have decided to publish it in article form as well, so that we can spread the solidarity across platforms like Pinterest, LinkedIn, and have a place for it to live on our website.

Today my kids were home from school because of icy conditions.
In a different part of the world, other kids were home from school because their country is under attack. And it’s all I have been able to think about today.
When I was up at 11:00 p.m. last night giving my youngest her seventh nebulized breathing treatment of the day, I watched news of the first missiles fired into Ukraine. I immediately thought: Can you imagine if you were a Ukrainian mother?
I shielded my kids from the news today as I checked in for updates nearly on the hour. My oldest knows in general terms from a discussion a few days ago that Russia likely intended war. But right now, it is my parenting opinion and choice, that the kids were not around when I watched the news. As their mother, I still protect them from information too heavy for them yet to carry. As the days go on and the outcome becomes clearer, I will provide appropriate information to them based on . . . honestly, my gut . . . what is appropriate and right for those moments.
But what if I were a Ukrainian mother?
I watched one mother interviewed today while her son stood close beside her in an underground subway station. She looked to be my age. Her son looked to be around the age of my oldest. She answered every question confidently and clearly. The journalist responded something like, “How are you able to stay so calm?” The mother paused for a few seconds and looked that journalist straight in the eyes. She said very firmly: “I have children.”
And we all know what that means.
My heart is broken and grieving for the mothers who are in the subway stations and bomb shelters, who are still being Mom to their children in these horrific circumstances. My heart is weeping with the moms whose sons are fighting to defend their country. My heart is sobbing for the mothers with babes in their wombs and on their breast. My heart is shattered for the moms who’ve tried to create space for their kids to sleep as night sets in, not knowing what tomorrow brings.
To the Ukrainian mothers: We are miles away, but these mothers here in Fort Worth are thinking of you and grieving with you.
Pray for the mothers of Ukraine. Pray for the children of Ukraine. Pray for peace.


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