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  • Writer's pictureBrandi Bourne

Ninja Mom

I am convinced that moms become secret ninjas the moment they have a child. If you’re a mom, you know exactly what I am talking about. If you’re not a mom, you’re probably wondering what I mean (while remembering how your mom was once a secret ninja). It’s about time someone talked about our secret.


Take for example the “mom sense.” My son is in his room playing and…wait a minute…mom sense goes off. I walked into the room. He was drawing on my walls. Or he has somehow managed to get water…everywhere. Or how about after we lay our kids down to sleep and it’s quiet, but you just KNOW they are up to something…walk in and they have toys under their blankets. I started noticing this sense when I would take naps with my son in those years that sleep was like a hidden dream, lost in the cries of my infant child. I would wake up, and within 30 seconds my son would wake up. I did not make any noise. Nothing startled him – no, it was the “mom sense.” I can promise you if my son is getting into something he isn’t supposed to, I will know. I always know. He asked me not too long ago how I know. I told him God tells me everything. Was that the best response? Probably not. I am sure a mom out there somewhere will have something to say about the psychology of my son believing God tells on him, but if it keeps him out of trouble, it works for me. Besides, what other explanation do I have for “the mom sense”?


Now let’s talk about those reflexes. I really started to notice this when my son started crawling and walking. In the blink of an eye, I was there to redirect him from the corner of the table. In a split second I managed to catch him midair from falling off the couch. There is always an arm or a leg prepared to stop a disaster even when I am in the middle of something. It is a natural reaction that I seem to have no control over – it just happens.

How about having eyes in the back of our head? I may turn my back on my son for a moment to take care of something, but I promise you I can tell you exactly what he is doing – or is about to do. I know he is about to stick his face dangerously close to our cat who is not entertained by his antics.


And look, I don’t know about ya’ll, but before I was a mom, I couldn’t imagine hurting a fly. I was not a “fighter.” I was the one who was slapped by a bully in middle school and decided to “turn the other cheek.” (What I didn’t know was that the bully would just strike the other cheek...) When I became a mom, I went into defense mode. I notice EVERYTHING around me when my son is around. And I would most definitely hurt someone if they tried to hurt my child. When we’re in public, all of my special mom powers – “mom-sense,” lightning reflexes and the eyes in the back of my head – are active.


But now, I am watching my son grow up. He is starting to outrun my reflexes though I am always right next to him ready to stop a disaster. My “mom-sense” still goes off but it’s harder to tell what’s really going on when he doesn’t want to talk about it. I don’t have eyes on him when he is at school. I can’t help but wonder…what happens when I am not there? I am already having to accept that I can’t protect him from everything. Even at 6, he knows more than I ever would have thought he would – and I don’t mean math and science here. Maybe the whole idea that God is telling me everything while he is at school will work for a while, but he will soon realize that He doesn’t tell me everything. I want to step in and rescue him just as I did when he was first learning to walk, but I know I can’t. One day my son is going to take some falls. One day he is going to realize that being a Christian in this world is hard. That bullies are mean. That there are people in this world that are cruel and violent. That there are people will manipulate him to get what they want.


I will always be there to some extent, whether that’s waiting for him to get off the bus and chat in the evening or waiting for his call about what happened at college. I know I am thinking ahead, but in this day and age, you must. Ninja mom is going to one day lose her abilities.


But all is not lost! I know exactly what to do. I have to train my son to be a ninja. Now I am convinced that we do gain additional abilities as parents and one day he will have that too. But my job as his mom is to prepare him for war. Not the kind of war you see in other countries or what has happened in the past, but spiritual war. It is my job to teach him how to stand up for himself and others – but to do so with grace. Don’t go punch the bully (unless the bully slapped you then…we’ll save that for another day), but don’t you dare stay silent. Watch out for the wolves in sheep’s clothing. When you fall, get back up. If someone says no, you better back up because no means no. Trust God no matter what happens. Pray, pray and when you don’t want to pray – pray. Don’t eat the yellow snow (Like we even get snow down here…) Every day is another chance to teach my son a life lesson. But one thing I must accept is he may not take my advice. He may make some of the very same mistakes I made, but at least I will know what to say to help him through those. But in the meantime, I will still be the ninja mom who won’t let go of his hand when we walk next to a road despite his protests. The mom who knows something is off and we need to talk about it. The mom who would fight to the death in a moment’s notice if it came down to it. The mom who is ready to catch him before he hits the ground.


I want to hear from the “ninja moms” out there. What do you think about all of this? What moment did you have that made you realize you have “special powers” you didn’t even know exist? What ones did I leave out? Talk to me, moms! I know I am not the only one!


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