It’s a phrase I’ve heard countless times, but none of those times resonated half as much as when my children were bouncing around, belting it out with all the Elmore energy they could muster. It was blaring from their favorite kid’s radio station, and they seemed to get louder each time the chorus came around. They were singing, “If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!”
It was both completely hilarious and absolutely thought provoking at the same time.
As I listened to them belt out the well-known phrase, I started to think about the words (I really had no choice–it’s a catchy little tune I couldn’t get out of my head). I knew it was the go-to phrase when people wanted to emphasize how mama’s bad mood can make the whole house miserable, but I, quite honestly, had never thought much of it before. Something about hearing my kids say it made me think twice, so I started to pick it a part to see if it could really jive with my core beliefs. I thought about the times when this mama wasn’t happy and my husband and kids just ignored me, or the times when I wasn’t happy and I still did my best to keep everyone else on top of their game. I decided that I wouldn’t be sporting the idea on a t-shirt anytime soon, but I couldn’t refute the fact that the guy (and I’m sure it was a man!) who originally came up with the phrase was on to something.
Over the next several days, I began thinking of other “If mama ain’t” phrases that might paint a more accurate picture of a woman’s influence. I finally came up with “If mama ain’t right, every body’s wrong.” (I know–It sounds like mama is a know-it-all, and it really is kinda funny), but what I really mean is that if mama isn’t righteous, on the right track, doing the right things, she’s creating an unnecessary mess for those she’s been blessed to care for. That idea ultimately morphed into the phrase, “If mama ain’t right, things can go terribly wrong,” and that one idea led me to a whole slew of “if mama ain’ts” that remind me of my responsibility and help keep me on my toes.
Here’s what I’m rambling about: it’s a mama’s responsibility (and every woman is a mama!) to minister to the needs of her family and those around her as best she can. Scripture makes this so clear that it’s undeniable. Mama won’t always be right, but she has to be committed to moving in the right direction. I’m one mama who is, and I’m glad you’re joining me on this journey.
The post “If Mama Ain’t…” first appeared on IfMamaAint.com on May 22, 2009
Anitra has been sharing useful ideas for moms at The Mama Zone since 2009. She’s a wife, mom of two and an elementary school teacher, turned homeschooling mom. She’s also an online influencer and ebook author who enjoys writing to help other moms and to build strong families.