We mums have a lot in common with Spiderman. We really do.
Spiderman has his spider senses, a tingling in his brain that warns him of dangers, a sense that he can also use to guide himself on his weblines.
And we, as mothers, often have this spider sense. We often know, deep in our hearts, what it is that is best for ourselves and our children.
Our spider sense is borne out of mothering, out of love, out of experience. Experience with this child and within our family.
So many times we question ourselves and our mothering spider sense. We listen to the experts and ignore that small, nagging voice, those inner qualms. Spiderman often does not listen to his spider sense when fatigued. Mothers often do not listen to our spider senses when we feel pulled in many directions and besieged by experts, by those who tell us they know best.
We need to acknowledge our own expertise in mothering, as we acknowledge the expertise of others.
I can’t tell you the number of times a fellow mother has asked me for advice and then, during our discussion, I see a dawning light appear on her face. She knew already what should be done with her child. She knew in her heart he needs more love or she needs more time or he needs clear parameters or she needs a change of direction. We mothers just don’t heed our spider sense.
We mums are like Spiderman. We have our own mothering superpower, our mothering gut instinct, and this can be examined in the light of day with other mothers, with fathers, with children, in prayer. But only if we first recognise that it is there.
Sometimes, our spider sense is built on fear…fear that if he doesn’t do well in maths he won’t get to university or that she doesn’t write now at all so that means she will never write.So we listen to an expert, force a child into a mold, all out of fear.
What if we acknowledged the role of spider sense and examined it, fears and love, reason and truth? What if we worked through our “what ifs” and faced our fears? What if we took some time to pray and reflect on what is really going on and what that whisper in our heart tells us to do?
Many times, my spider sense tells me to give a son some time.
Many times, my spider sense lets me know it is time for a nudge.
Many times, I have ignored my mothering spider sense, my gut instinct, and I have been left with a less honest relationship, a less authentic path, and an unsettling feeling that something is not quite right.
It is trusting in that sapientia, that wisdom arising from prayer, love, reason and experience. If we can recognise this and exercise this wisdom, then we also teach our children to do the same. To reason, to love, and to listen to that still, small voice.