I have celebrated 28 Mother’s Days in my lifetime. For that one day a year that is dedicated to her, I have made my mom cards, written poems and brought flowers to show her how special she is. The reality is that there is nothing I could do or buy that would ever explain how thankful I am for her, for her dedication as a mom, for her support, for the strength she has shown, for the role model she has been and continues to be or for the impact she has had on the women my sisters and I have become and continue to grow into. It has not been an easy past few years for my family but in particular, it has been difficult for my mom. It breaks my heart to see her go through what she has. When you feel so strongly about someone, it is not always easy to express how you feel but my sister Kate has always been good with words. I would like to share a note that she sent to my mom a little while back (with both of their permissions of course).
Once upon a time there was a young girl. She was shy, quiet and unsure of herself. As a child, she was nervous about trying new things; climbing trees, speaking up in class. She would nervously reach for a branch to pull herself up into a tree but before she took that first step, her gaze would wander over to her side. Every time, without fail, her mom would be standing there watching her, sending a quiet air of confidence to her young daughter and as if she had wings, the young girl would lift herself up into that tree. This extended into many parts of the young girl’s life- she would stand on the soccer field feeling frozen with nerves until she heard the excited roar of her mother’s voice from the stands telling her “you can do it.” (Or "kick it high!" Ha ha ha)
As the young girl grew into a young lady, she became more confident in herself but, like most teenagers, she felt the need to push the limits. And, who better to test the limits with than someone you know will be there for you no matter what? So she pushed her mom’s limits. Abhorrent arguments happened, terrible things were said but the young lady’s love for her mom was never questioned. In fact, the differences she had with her mom simply allowed the young girl to explore herself, her strengths and weaknesses, ultimately making her a better person.
The young lady finally grew out of her “terrible teens” and into a young woman. By this point, she was relatively independent of her parents; living on her own, paying her bills- taking care of herself. However, no matter how independent she was in her personal life, she still sought out her mother’s approval, always wanting to make her proud- sometimes worrying that she wasn’t. Despite what she was doing or what her perception was of her achievements, her mom was always there telling her how proud she was of her & encouraging her no matter what.
That young woman is now an adult. She still lives on her own, cooks her own meals, and pays her own bills. Her relationship with her mom has transformed itself into a fun, loving, supportive friendship. This does not mean however that she doesn’t still look up to her mom, turn to her for reassurance or try to make her proud. She always will. She also lives with the hope that she can do the same for her mom. While growing up, every step of the way, the girl looked to her mom for confidence, encouragement and strength. When we are young, we don’t realize how difficult those “bad days” can be… because our parents do so much to shield us from the stress, the hurt and the pain- they absorb it for us.
Thanks to her mom, the woman is a strong, confident, and happy person. She is so grateful for everything she has been taught, everything she has been given, everything she is. She knows that without her parents, without her mom, her reality would be much different. With all of this knowledge, all of this confidence, all of this strength she can now play a different role for her mom. Now she can be the strong one. She can provide encouragement, confidence… because she knows that life can sometimes take the wind out of people’s sails. And that’s ok, she might not be powerful enough to bring back those forceful winds but she can certainly provide a wind strong enough to keep both her and her mom sailing forward. She knows that she can take the helm because before anyone knows it, her mom will be back on top being the strong, great woman she has always been- the rock the girl has leaned on countless times.
So for now, the woman stands quietly waiting- some worry in her mind but an overwhelming feeling of love for her mom in her heart, and confidence running through her veins.
All will be fine mom- I love you more than words can say.
This past September, I not only married the man that I can only hope every girl finds one day, I also officially gained a family that could not be better suited. Being Mother’s Day, I also want to express how lucky I am to have another mom. She might have only been around for the past few years of my life, but she is an incredible person that I am so thankful to have in my life. Her selflessness and generosity are just a few of many examples of the mother I hope to be to my children. Although B and I cannot be there to celebrate this day with her, I hope that she enjoys it and that she is treated well J
Happy Mother's Day to all mothers.