How To Mother A Stranger, If The Stranger Is You

During this increasingly simple and complicated time, I’ve passed through myself more often than I can count. All of my old tricks of control work very little, or quite short in time. My emotions (as I expect are the same for others), rev at happy, content, then sad after the kids go to bed. Some days, if I’m lucky, the entire day is full of one field of acceptance and love. And in truth, those days are often the days when I steer clear of the news.

Between it all, I’ve managed to do this thing, in which I care for my inner self. This is not a frivolous action. Or a self-care meme posted in stories, that I expect folks to devour within in minutes and try themselves. All of this started when I realized the child in me was actually just as worried, scared, and sad for what was, is, and will be as I imagine parts of my children would be if I didn’t care for them. I imagine, that this event, has uprooted nets of safety I’ve woven year after year. And I imagine, that for many of us this remains true too.

I am still wading trough. In retrospect, the last 25 days have only been possible because I’ve been honest with myself about this fact. That the currents of overwhelmed energy flow because I am unsure and displaced, needing a hug or a center. And the moments of content are born out of mostly giving it to my children, which in many ways sews it back into myself. Rather, a version of myself that is very much a young girl looking out into the world with some level of childhood fear for the world slowly swirling around beyond my front stoop.

Recently, in an afternoon attempt to take hold and cater to little me and myself now, I moved my desk into my room, bought lilies and placed them into a basket for my desk. What came after was surprisngly palliative. I found all of my photos of my grandmother, my mother, myself, and River and stuck them into my mirror. A visual of strength and womanhood past and present, enveloped in guidance and care. And more importantly, of mothering this current stranger.

The last few mornings have been filled with this mothering hug, if you will. In a world where I know many will need it, when their days are spent giving hugs and needing them equally, maybe this will help you too.

Gather your things, post them where you need, take care.

4 thoughts on “How To Mother A Stranger, If The Stranger Is You

  • Reply Meghan April 7, 2020 at 11:32 pm

    The idea of gathering and posting photos is incredibly simple, but so powerful. What a great reminder that a small shift can inspire and encourage during even the hardest of times. Motherhood lately feels draining, but I am trying to enjoy this time inside the home, when the world seems unsteady.

    • Reply latonya April 8, 2020 at 9:27 am

      Hi Meghan, I hear you. Feeling much of the same drain. And it is such a odd experience being inside, in comparison to out, when it has it’s own totality of draining as well.

      Thanks for being here and reading.


  • Reply Meg April 8, 2020 at 9:13 am

    This is so beautiful and so needed for so many of us. Whether we’re taking care of others or ourselves, this reminder to make space and gather and garner strength resonated with me on a deep level. As always, thank you for your honesty and thoughtfulness.

    • Reply latonya April 8, 2020 at 9:26 am

      Thank you so much for reading, Meg. And for sharing this space with me.

      Sending love,

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