The Mama Fight


It was probably something I ate. At seven months pregnant the pain in my abdomen doubled me over and all I could imagine was a monstrous, horrible gas attack. But after a few hours and no relief, my nervous husband Mike called our midwife and she ordered us to meet her at the hospital.

We were terrified.

This is back in 1985 and we were baby Christians, having been saved a little more than a year. We didn’t have a strong foundation of faith yet and we had no idea what was happening to us and our baby so we did the only thing we knew. We called the woman who had led us to the Lord and she got her church praying for us.

Since I was a little girl, my goal was to become a mother and have at least five kids. In fact, Mike and I planned on a messy, noisy houseful of children but God had a different plan. A second pregnancy turned ectopic (tubal) and we lost the baby and all future fertility. Four failed adoption attempts later we got the memo. It took a while to accept we would have only one child but eventually we saw God’s hand and will in what seemed to be the death of our dreams. But that’s a whole other story.

Anyway, back to the hospital. No one had a clue what was wrong with me. Appendicitis? Premature labor? Indigestion? Virus?

I was having some contractions so they hooked me up to the monitor. Doctors came in and out, poking and prodding and examining me. Fear was palpable in that hospital room. We didn’t know if our baby was a boy or a girl (this was thirty-three years ago) but that terrifying night in the hospital, when we didn’t know if our baby would live or die, I learned the first lesson of being a mother.

No matter what the circumstances, whether you understand what’s happening or not, a mother will fight for her child. She will do whatever it takes to give that baby a chance. Love takes over amid the desperation and she takes her stand and stands her ground.

For awhile they really thought it was appendicitis and I’d have to have my appendix out. If it would save the baby, then fine, just do it. Whatever the cost. Just save my baby.

I didn’t know about taking thoughts captive or casting down vain imaginations. I didn’t know that we ‘fight the good fight’. I just knew I had to fight. So I prayed and I feared…but I prayed. Mike prayed. We prayed together. We begged God for a miracle.

In the end, it wasn’t appendicitis and the doctors never could figure out what was wrong with me. The contractions stopped and the pain subsided and all they could say was that it was an “anomaly” which is doctor speak for “we don’t have a clue”.

We headed home, worn out but relieved. Two months later, (ten days past her due date), our daughter Francesca was born, all eight pounds, ten ounces of her.

I had no experience with babies. Seriously, none at all. But I learned. God sent me wonderful mama mentors in those days. I made plenty of mistakes but one thing never changed. I never stopped fighting or standing for my baby girl. Fighting in faith, fighting my own doubts and fears, fighting in prayer, standing in the gap, fighting for her future.

Franny’s all grown now with a husband and family of her own. I adore her four babies with everything in me. I love being Mimi and I love playing with them and buying them way too much stuff. When I’m with them my goals are to make cupcakes, make laughter and make memories. And to model a love for God that makes them want to love Him too.

But in the secret place, the place they don’t see, the sacred place of prayer, I fight. I fight for their future, I fight for their destiny. I take God at His word and I fight the good fight of faith. The fight of belief. And I stand my ground.

The weapons of my warfare? Love. Because that’s how we mamas do it.

Written by Kate Battistelli, author of Growing Great Kids-Partner with God to Cultivate His Purpose in Your Child’s Life, published by Charisma House. Her newest book, The God Dare, published by Barbour Books, will release in 2019. She’s mom to GRAMMY award-winning artist Francesca Battistelli and Mimi to her 4 children. She’s been married to her best friend Mike for 35 years and lives just outside of Nashville. Kate loves to cook and blogs about food and faith at You can follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook.