[N]atural forces can counteract the mother’s duties even when she amply indicates a genuine intention for good family life, a spirit of self-sacrifice, and of inner growth: if her husband’s character and lifestyle make a peaceful coexistence impossible; if her children reveal dangerous tendencies which are unlikely to yield to education; if even economic need steps into the picture.
Then, almost immediately, her strength of body and nerves are consumed and her soul ceases to develop under its burden if ever new power from an inexhaustible source is not directed to it.
This inexhaustible source of power is the grace of God. It depends only on knowing one’s way and going to this source again and again. There is always a way open to each of the faithful: the way of prayer.
Whoever sincerely believes in the words “Ask and you shall receive” [Mt 7:7] is given consolation and courage to persevere in every need. Even if it is not the immediate help, which to some extent, the person conceives of and desires, help does come.
Saint Edith Stein
Spirituality of the Christian Woman (excerpt)
Lectures to the Organization of Catholic Women, Zurich (1932)
Stein, E 2017, Essays On Woman, The Collected Works of Edith Stein, Book 2, translated from the German by Oben, F, ICS Publications, Washington D.C.