Tuesday, December 12, 2006

TMI Tuesday Sermonette

warning: for those who are very sensitive, please know that this post contains potentially blasphemous and shocking statements

Yes, this is Wednesday, but I started this last night so the title stands.

The other night I was thinking about why this time of year is so difficult and this thought occurred to me. God-centered religion has really harmed women a lot over the ages and it becomes most apparent at this time of year.

Christmas is the celebration of Christ's birth. We celebrate the arrival of the baby. But somehow it is ignored that birth also involves a woman. Well, you can't give birth to anyone without a mother. The Protestants, especially Fundamentalists, completely ignore that messiness of birth in their celebrations. Well, I've got news for them:

Jesus came out of Mary's VAGINA!

(I was wallowing in my misery, and by God, I think I found a little bit of my missing humor. Sometimes you have to get real cozy and familiar with your misery so you'll learn something from it. Hell, just dive into it and swim. You might find some of those things that sank to the bottom and were lost. Sometimes I dream that I can breathe under water. It's weird, but cool.)

Okay, so Christmas is as much a mother's holiday as anything else, whether you like to admit it or not. And we all know that in most families it is the mother who assures that Christmas happens at all. We do most of the shopping, decorating, and all that. It's a lot of work that goes mostly unnoticed and unappreciated, unless there is some disaster and someone doesn't get what they asked for. Well, then, it's all Mom's fault for not finding it, and never mind all the other crap she did get you. This is what happens when you take the mother out of birth and just celebrate the child. The children get spoiled! And the mothers become downtrodden.

People say, "Jesus is the Reason for the Season." Well, sure, but he wouldn't have gotten here without his mother. Someone should invent a new slogan for the holiday that celebrates Motherhood and the pains that mothers go through to bring their children into the world and also the pains that mothers go through to make their children happy. Sorry, I'm not feeling especially inventive right now. If it were up to me the new slogan would be "Jesus came from Mary's vagina." But I really don't think that will catch on too well.

Now, before any self-righteous nincompoop gets their panties or boxers or briefs or whatever in a wad, just consider this: Ten years ago my mother was dying - wasting away with cancer during that holiday season. The tenth anniversary of her death is just a few days after Christmas. So allow me a little expression of mourning and if that expression takes the form of blasphemy I think God will forgive me whether anyone else will or not. And that's the point of Jesus coming out of Mary's vagina in the first place, right?

So I miss my mother and it's very sad to me that two of my children never met her and will only know her from pictures and stories. It really kind of SUCKS. And the holiday season which is as much a reminder of motherhood as you can invent is pretty painful for me. I don't expect anyone else to really understand because you can't until you've lost your own mother, but maybe if anyone actually reads this they'll see the holiday with a new perspective and appreciation for the women who keep the holidays coming every year.

And you know what, we all came out of our mothers' vaginas. Well, except for those who were born via c-section, like my children. But still they came out of my body. Maybe that new slogan could be something like "Jesus came from Mary's belly." Yeah, that's not so bad.

And that is this week's sermonette. Hey, many churches have Wednesday night services, so there you go.


DHammett said...

A couple of notes on your sermonette...

Roman Catholics revere Mary, the Mother of God, at the expense of endless mocking by many "Christian" denominations.

We (Americans) do appreciate mothers and recognize them with a holiday: see Mother's Day. Yeah, I know there's a Father's Day, too, but it's always been my experience that moms get more attention and spoiled than dads do on their respective days (not that it's not warranted...it just happens). Mom gets taken out to breakfast or brunch or dinner or all of the above. Dad barbecues his own dinner. ;-)

In my home, while mom does most of the gift-buying, wrapping, decorating, etc., she also gets most of the credit. The fact that dad pays for it all (mom essentially doesn't work outside the home) goes unrecognized. But I'm OK with that. Mom deserves all the praise and appreciation she receives and more.

Finally, WELCOME BACK!!!!!! I selfishly hope this means that we'll be hearing more from you as time goes by.

*grins from ear to ear*

Rae Ann said...

dh, thanks! I'm just going to have to take it as it comes or doesn't come. ;-) I like that the Catholics recognize Mary much more than the Protestants. And I know that we have a Mother's Day and all that. I was just trying to explain a little bit of the low psychology of the season. Thanks for sticking around!

Ellen said...

Hey, Rae--I love this posting even though I hurt for the pain this season brings you. When you make the "Jesus Came from Mary's Belly" bumper stickers, I want one! (Even though I really prefer the "Jesus Came from Mary's Vagina" slogan, it's a sad truth that market appeal is an unavoidable consideration.)

You know what's going to happen in just a decade or so? Your kids, whether or not they turn out to be the type of people who make a point of expressing it (my bet is that they will), are going to treasure memories of the Christmases you've made for them for the rest of their lives. That may not help right now, this year, but I hope maybe it does at least a little.

IMHO, you are a mom of whom your mom would be extremely proud, and I also believe (again, little consolation it may be now) that while 2 of your kids will grow up not having known your mom, they will meet her someday, in some dimension.

with love,

Rae Ann said...

ellen, thanks, and this is why you're my best friend! (well, not all of it but a big part, you know what I mean)