A Mother’s Day Tribute

135_26487570120_4898_nAlthough I’m not a mom, I’ve been deeply touched by the women in my life who are mothers.  I’m in awe of the energy and strength and self-sacrifice you pour out from your heart into our world and just want you to know it doesn’t go un-noticed.

To my own Mom, who continues to teach me about the big things and the little things in this crazy life, you embody selfless love and show me no matter how old your daughters get, you’ll never stop being there.  As we walk the hardest parts of our lives, we know that you’ll be there for us.  Our pain is your pain.  Thank you for showing me that you’re never too old to snuggle with your mom in the morning.

To my grandma who raised 16 kids (I know, 16!), who obviously knew what hard work meant.  The legacy you leave is one of a joyful soul.  Thank you for showing me how to eat ice cream sundaes for breakfast.

To my sister who gave up pretty much everything in her diet, in order to continue to breast feed her infant son with allergies.  She quite literally did everything she could to do what she felt was best for him.  You’ve shown me the ability to do difficult acts of selflessness for others.

Martha & BarrettTo my sister and other Moms going through profound loss, who find the strength to get up every morning and face a life you don’t recognize.  I can see your face change for an instant when you are momentarily pulled out of your grief to help your sons with their needs.  You are raising two awesome people as a single parent and making sure their lives are filled with fun, stability and adventure even though you are feeling pain, loss and uncertainty.   Thank you for showing the world your resilience, perseverance and faith – they shine through in everything you do.

Marita & EliotTo my friend who brought her 2 kids out to visit us recently.  During that trip, you made comments that you felt guilty that they ate fruit loops and still used a pacifier.  Those things don’t matter.  What matters is that your kids are happy and feel loved, and everyone around can see that.   You were never checking your phone or email.  Please let go of any guilt, and truly believe that you are doing an amazing job.  Thank you for showing me how to be in the moment with the people around you.

Nina n UsTo my mother-in-law who loves her sons fiercely and who has always accepted me as a daughter, even sending me a Mother’s Day card every year.  You get up every morning and work your butt off even when the universe throws curve balls right at you.  Despite all the trials, you continue to be one of the most generous, giving and positive souls I know.  Thank you for inspiring me to be the same.

To my aunt and other moms out there that know that to be the best Mom you can, it means getting up and going to work outside the home every day.  These decisions don’t come easy.  Thank you for showing me that your contributions reach far beyond raising your children, that really knowing yourself is important, and that you do what’s best for your family even if it is difficult.

To the numerous women out there who want to be Moms with their whole heart, but it just isn’t happening.  You are on an emotional roller coaster, fueled by hormones and hope.  You put your trust in your bodies and in science, and there is nothing easy about it.  You’ve shown me the power of hope and to have compassion because you never know the quiet battles people are waging.

Turkey TowelsTo all the Moms out there, I am profoundly grateful for the gifts you share with the rest of us non-Moms.  Your gifts come from just trying to do your best for your kids, but they have a ripple effect on the people around you, and just keep moving out in the world as you continue to drive kids to soccer, keep them fed, wipe tears (sometimes your own), wake up in the middle of the night, face piles of dirty clothes.  You are a veritable force of goodness.  Thank you.  May today be a day you can sit back and reflect on these gifts, and know that YOU ARE AMAZING.