prayer for a mother becoming

May 8th, 2013

With time, your roots grow deep and your branches long. You lean a little less backward in fear and a little less forward in doubt, resting solidly right where you are. When the wind blows, you bend. When it stops, you straighten. Your boughs provide shelter and shade. Your strength supports the sky.

Momma Zen

There is a quiet hollow to my days now. I have less to do and more time to observe. I can see inside the hearts of new mothers and old mothers and grandmothers. And grandfathers too. Good folks in every trembling state of hope, exhilaration, despair, exhaustion and worry. And so I fold my hands and pray.

May you be tired and afraid
overwhelmed and ready to quit.
Start over, over
ten thousand times over
roll out, get up, fall down
break into tears
open in laughter
sing and dance
be silly, be glad.
May you forget most things,
remember everything,
come to know in your bones
with your blood
through your eyes
from your lips
out of earth
deep below, well beyond
you are love.
You are just love.

A companion to Prayer for a Girl Becoming.


  1. thank you, karen. “quit. start over. you are love.” such nectar.

    Comment by melissa — May 1, 2012 @ 8:40 am

  2. Beautiful though for those moments when spring storms threaten to blow us all over – thank you!

    Comment by Amanda — May 1, 2012 @ 10:00 am

  3. Beautiful Karen–just beautiful. A blessing to the world.

    Comment by Meg Casey — May 1, 2012 @ 12:45 pm

  4. beautiful. there are days when one wants to give up because one can’t understand why one can’t be grateful for all one as…and then one quits and starts over. thank you.

    Comment by mya — May 1, 2012 @ 2:52 pm

  5. I have been so yearning for four and a half years for the fatigue to be replaced by deep, uninterrupted sleep that I forgot to see the exhaustion as a gift. This prayer opens my energy, losens things up..,thank you!

    Comment by Amy Sugihara — May 1, 2012 @ 8:04 pm

  6. Thank you. I would love to read more. I just quit and started over this spring. There is such hope and joy in doing that if you allow yourself to have faith. Have a wonderful day!!!

    Comment by Simone — May 2, 2012 @ 1:02 am

  7. Lovely! I know a few new mama’s that could benefit from this wonderful book.
    Thank you for your words!

    Comment by Barbara — May 2, 2012 @ 7:29 am

  8. Thank you! Your words resonate so deeply. Every time.

    Comment by Carole — May 2, 2012 @ 9:16 am

  9. Please come to Canada one of these days!

    Comment by Carole — May 2, 2012 @ 9:17 am

  10. Beautiful. Thank you.

    Comment by Shelby — May 2, 2012 @ 10:12 am

  11. I haven’t had a chance to read this book yet. My library doesn’t carry it and I can’t afford it right now. I would LOVE to win a copy! Thank you!

    Comment by Shelby — May 2, 2012 @ 10:13 am

  12. Thank you so much for this beautiful prayer! I am passing it on to a new mama friend of mine. <3

    Comment by Gwynn — May 2, 2012 @ 11:00 am

  13. Wow! I often need reminders to keep me on track, and I would absolutely love a copy of your book!
    Thank you x

    Comment by Briony — May 2, 2012 @ 2:18 pm

  14. Thank you. Just beautiful.

    Comment by Aparna — May 2, 2012 @ 3:42 pm

  15. I loved the interview. Interesting how these “practices” deepen in time and repetition. I could feel the “weight” of your practice through the years expressed in your words and the wealth it has brought you.

    Comment by Simone — May 3, 2012 @ 8:29 am

  16. I’m a new Mom and another new Mom sent this to me today . . . it was perfect. Thanks.

    Comment by Emily — May 3, 2012 @ 5:37 pm

  17. […] Leaning into my, “I am just love-ness” this poem affirms for me what I know. Thank you once again Karen. […]

    Pingback by Beautiful Faces. Magical Places. — Hannah Marcotti — May 4, 2012 @ 8:16 am

  18. This never gets old.

    Comment by Jena — November 9, 2012 @ 8:51 am

  19. Thank you, Karen. I want to post this on my fridge. Or hang it next to my bed.

    Comment by Heidi Sohng — November 9, 2012 @ 11:29 am

  20. This is beautiful…I am going to post next to my computer on the wall so I can see it all the time…. and on the wall between my girls’ rooms, a prayer for a girl becoming…I have found solace in your mamma zen book and have given it to a half dozen women hoping they can do the same. thank you.

    Comment by mya — April 9, 2013 @ 7:07 am

  21. I just failed terribly with my 5 year old son while my mother looked on. I am starting over and will keep starting over and over…….thank you for this.

    Comment by Rachel — May 9, 2013 @ 4:50 pm

  22. Maezen, a very happy Mother’s Day to you, with much love.

    Comment by Sarah Stanton — May 12, 2013 @ 4:59 am

  23. Thank you for this. xo

    Comment by Rashmi — May 12, 2013 @ 4:19 pm

  24. This poem has been on my fridge for a year. I love it.

    Comment by Kirsten — May 13, 2013 @ 4:30 am

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