making a difference!
Jamie Martin Shines as a Steady Mom and Homeschooler
Writer and spiritual activist Marianne Williamson once said, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world." Indeed, "playing small" our accomplishments, even if they're only done in the service of our children, does nobody any good. The things we do for our children collectively are, in some fundamental way, the backbone of our society, an indicator of it's health. The passion with which we as mothers look outside ourselves to help our children and all children in need is an indication of our humanity. And women like Jamie Martin are a good reference point. The woman, who blogs and writes as SteadyMom, is an example because of her desire to help others and the simple ways in which she does it.
"My life's passion is children," Jamie says, "both my own and those in need around the world. My advocacy for children through the years has included working with special needs kids, two international adoptions, and our family's current efforts to abolish child sex slavery through the charity Love146, where my husband works." She and her England-born husband have one biological son, one son adopted from Nigeria, and a daughter adopted from India, all seven or eight years old with only 22 months separating the oldest from the youngest. Regarding the process of adoption, she relates, "I'm a different woman today because of adoption. A different mother. This beautiful process helped me find myself, helped define my family, changed me. I'm a broken mother as well—having cried tears of joy, sadness, anger, and pain over this beautiful system with its imperfections. Yes, I am broken. And it's worth it. My heart is not my own anymore. It belongs to the children. All of them. Those who cry. Those who hunger. Those who wish. Those who dare to hope. Those who dream of family. Those who wait."
She also homeschools her three children. Anyone familiar with homeschooling can understand what an endeavor that is. Her philosophy is: "Industrialized schooling is a broken system. And if it’s in my power to give my kids a superb education, it’s also my obligation, my responsibility to do so. Just because we can’t solve the beast of schooling and all its problems overnight, it doesn’t mean we can’t give our own kids the education we know they need and deserve. Mother Teresa said it well: 'If I look at the mass, I will never act. If I look at the one, I will.'”
And she, with her husband, was willing to move her family cross-country so that her husband could take on the job of CEO of Love146, an organization whose vision is to end child sex trafficking and exploitation. She says, "The trafficking and rape of children for profit is one of the darkest stories on the planet. Interventions for these children are critical to their survival. This is why Love146 exists. Since 2002, the organization has been responding with prevention and aftercare solutions throughout Asia, Europe, and the United States."
Her simple, mom-oriented approach to making a difference in the world is reflected in her writing as well, which she does at her blogs SteadyMom and SimpleHomeSchool.net, and in the books she writes. "Since my goal is to live with intention, I can't focus my blog on the unimportant. I can't because I know too much, because I've stood in the sweltering heat of an African orphanage holding a sick-with-malaria, starving child in my arms: my son, Elijah. He survived, but over 3,000 African children each day die from the same disease"
"I can't do it because last night I cried alongside my little girl as she talked about four years in an orphanage waiting for a family. I know the number of children still waiting at her 'India House,' and that millions of orphans with broken stories, empty bellies, and aching hearts are suffering tonight. I can't do it because I know that even as I type this post, thousands of children are being raped and abused at the hands of predators around the world, and that two children are sold into sexual slavery every minute."
What can you do to help orphans and other children in need feel loved?