Raising ourselves from cradle to grave is a big job! Breaking old habits and challenging our cultivated mindsets is difficult. As children we are guided by our parents and teachers, but as adults, who assists us in our development? Who can help us to heal the wounds of our childhoods, repair the brokenness of our adulthoods, and inspire the next chapters of our new lives? While it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a council to raise an adult.
In Self-Mothering: My Mothers’ Council, author and physiatrist Deborah Lee Bernal introduces an active process to help us find heroes, contemporary role models, and personal mentors—people that we can rely on to help us develop and heal as adults. Through this process of self-mothering, you can choose who motivates you and whom you want to emulate for your own council of mothers; this council can guide you to your destiny, and Dr. Bernal suggests a number of renowned women to follow on this path: Maya Angelou, the lawyer mother; Fa Mulan, mother wit; the biblical prophetess Deborah, the queen mother; Mother Teresa, doctor mom; Harriet Tubman, the godmother; and many, many more.
The lives of these women speak volumes and can today reveal a path to your own enlightenment. You do not have to choose these mothers; you can choose the women for your own council of mothers. Because through all stages of our lives, we need our mothers’ counsel.