Characteristics of an #Unbroken Mom [Movie Review]

keyart2Have you ever had one of those days when you felt broken? Let me refresh your memory. Every appliance in the house is on the fritz, the cat brings you a “present” that resembles a dead dragon, the kids have strep throat for the third time this season, the babysitter cancels at the last minute and you have a “very important” deadline you are clearly going to miss. Oh, and there’s a note in a backpack warning of a lice epidemic at school. Been there? Me, too.

In times like this I try not to let my situation define me. I look around at others who are facing far worse misfortune and wonder what it takes to rise above life’s challenges. I marvel at the capacity of some people who remain #unbroken in the face of extraordinary adversity. People like Louis Zamperini, whose life is chronicled in the movie (and book) Unbroken, a remarkable story of survival and forgiveness.

On the surface, I don’t have a lot in common with the late Louis Zamperini. But I think moms can learn from Louie what it takes to remain unbroken in spite of life’s detours, trials and obstacles. We don’t have to be shipwrecked, beaten beyond recognition or imprisoned in a Japanese war camp to experience the kind of difficulty that can break us. New babies…aging parents…setbacks in our health…marital struggles…financial problems…unplanned relocations… These are the things that derail us. They have the power to break our spirits, dissolve our will and test our faith – if we let them. Or, we can allow them to shape us into the women God calls us to become. It’s our choice. And we can choose to be #unbroken, like Louis Zamperini.

Characteristics of an #Unbroken Mom

Resilience: Louie’s horrific experiences are difficult to watch on screen, but the message is uplifting. Under the same circumstances, most of us would crumble both physically and emotionally. Yet, Louie grew stronger with every ordeal.

I think that’s how mothers manage to get through the seemingly endless parade of challenges that greet us every day. We don’t allow them to grab ahold of our heart and fill us with anger and frustration. We accept each one, doing our best with what we know and the resources we have. And we grow stronger as mothers because of the experience. We become #unbroken in the face of life’s tribulations.

Clear Focus: Despite the unfathomable suffering and despair that surrounded Louie, he was able to keep his eyes fixed on his goal: survival. He knew that surviving the war was his way to win the battle and defeat the enemy. Nothing else mattered.

As mothers, we can easily lose site of our priorities in an effort to complete the tasks set before us. That’s why I often find myself choosing to do laundry or wash dishes when I had planned to read scripture. And I’m ashamed to admit it’s why I sometimes shush my child and devote my attention to a business related project. Every day is a new opportunity to reexamine what matters most to us. And to ask God to provide clear guidance and direction so that we remain focused and #unbroken when it comes to our true priorities.

Wise Companionship: God placed mentors in Louie’s life including his brother Pete, his pilot and friend Phil, and his wife Cynthia. Without their encouragement, support and faith, Louie’s life would certainly have taken a different path.

Our life story may not be as enthralling as Louie’s, but the people we surround ourselves with truly make a difference in who we become. And while we can’t always chose who we spend time with, we can chose who we let into our hearts, who we listen to and who we trust with our hopes and dreams and fears. We pray that our children make wise choices when it comes to their friends, so we too must seek out relationships that enable us to be the very best versions of ourselves. We must choose companions that allow us to remain #unbroken moms!

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Date night movie premiere with my hubby!

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Meet Featured Sister Mona Corwin

Mona pic for the photo box in header of blog copyIf there were a poster child for motherhood, it would be Mona Corwin. I’m not saying she’s the perfect mom, but she is hands down the most passionate woman I know about the topic of motherhood and raising a generation of joy-filled moms. Her mission to inspire others to live a life of Biblical womanhood is unstoppable!

Meet Featured Mona Corwin

Business Name: Mona Corwin

Business Description:

Author, speaker and creator of a community that desires to restore and embrace the joy-filled mission of marriage and mothering.

Mona’s Story: 

I am a mentor. Actually I am a pointer. I point to things. Things like… lies I see women believe, truth that the Bible reveals, and a love like no other, Jesus. I’m the “been there done that” girl on a journey to come back and lend a hand, a shoulder and yes a pointer. I love encouraging and equipping women in the art of womanhood. To become not only givers of life physically, but to be life givers in every situation that comes their way. We were created to do this… do you know that? Not sure how? Join me and the community of women that desire to live fully feminine and impact their generation. We are UnStoppable.
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Please Don’t Tell Me How Busy You Are

BusyMom2I say this with love…and a complete, empathetic understanding of your overscheduled life… but you’ve got to stop blaming your decisions on your busy calendar. If you can’t get together for coffee, tell me you have other plans. If you can’t manage to deliver something you’ve promised a hundred times, admit that you’re a disorganized mess and ask me to extend some grace. If you are chronically late to pick up your child tell me there’s a conflict in your schedule or that you haven’t quite figured out how long it takes you to get out the door with a new baby. I would understand that. I could relate to that.

But please — for the love of all things sacred to moms on this planet — don’t tell me how “busy” you are. Don’t list all the things you have on your plate, apologize half-heartedly and expect me to cut you a break. Not because I don’t care or because I don’t believe you. And not because I think I’m busier than you are. Trust me, the last thing I want to see is women competing for the title of Most Busiest Mom – because being busy is not a good thing in my book. It’s not something I brag about or something that I’m proud of. It’s something I battle on a regular basis.

Let’s Be Honest

When you tell me you’re too busy, you’re saying my request (or your commitment) is not important. And that’s ok – as long as you’re honest about it and tell me that up front. Don’t let me wait around for you — expecting you to deliver on a promise. Don’t let me count on you, only to be disappointed. Don’t beg me to make exceptions and jump through hoops to accommodate your busy world, as if the rest of us don’t live there with you.

Let’s face it – moms are busy people. And we tend to take on more than we should. We’re all in this mess together. We created it ourselves. And we tell ourselves it’s only here for a season…so we will muddle through…because someday we’ll miss it. I get that. And I agree we should embrace the chaos of our responsibility-filled lives and enjoy the blessings of motherhood and all that this season brings. But we can do that with honesty and grace and kindness. Without blaming others, letting people down and expecting sympathy or special treatment. And perhaps more importantly – without feeling like we’ve failed. [Read more…]