May 10, 2015

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Maintenance Day 32: Mother’s Day

I have never been as blessed as I have in being called “mama”. It is the most important job that I have and the one that will define me for eternity. My ability and accomplishments as a mother will be reflected in my children and the way that they parent their own children. It is the most gratifying part of my day. Coming home to see three smiling faces run to me and yell “mama’s home!” is more fulfilling than any other site. And being a mom is the most rewarding feeling in the world. There is nothing better than feeling a child’s arms wrap around you and the love that you share for each other an unspoken joy.

I am so grateful for each one of my children. Tate is such a compassionate child and is so eager to learn. Of all of my children, I think that he is most like me growing up. I remember the day that he was born and my first day as a mom. I just wanted to soak up every moment and every ounce of him. Now, he challenges me with questions that I never thought a preschooler would ask. He is so affectionate and sweet. He makes me feel like the best mom in the world when I see him doing things I do. Like giving me “a hundred kisses”. He makes my heart melt!

Evangeline reminds me to have fun. She is a singing, dancing, fun loving hug machine. She is probably as close to the opposite of me as she could be. She is outgoing, talkative, imaginative. She makes me stop to take time to play. Evangeline reminds me enjoy every moment. I love it when I look at her and smile, she gives a goofy smile right back. And, oh, those curls! This girl has more spunk and pizzazz than I could imagine. She came out quiet as a mouse but hasn’t stopped laughing since. Evangeline makes my heart skip a beat when she hugs me because she holds on tight and is never the first to let go.

Scarlett. Oh Scarlett! If there was anyone to make me feel like a mother of both extremes, it would be her. There are days when I see her as my biggest challenge. She was the baby in danger before she was born. She did not sleep for more than three hours a night for the first 15 months. She has made me lose my temper and my mind. She has made me cry and scream. But there are even more days when I see her as my biggest success as a mother. She, and all of her challenges, have made me more patient and giving. She has made me stronger. She has made me a better mother and a better wife. Every moment that I get to hold her and look into her eyes is a moment to cherish. Every idea that I had of what motherhood would be, she has magnified.

Having a wonderful mother has made me who I am. My mom always expected great things from us and not only pushed us to achieve those things but supported us too. She has been involved in our lives. This past year, my mom has been reliable, dependable, supportive, encouraging. She compliments me when I need reassurance and cries when I need to let go too. She has dedicated her time and energy to helping us when we needed her most. My mom says that there is nothing harder than watching your granddaughter fight cancer except watching your daughter fight with her.

I am also lucky to have a wonderful mother-in-law. She is so kind and smart. I always know that I can call her with a dilemma and she will help me reason through it. I love having intelligent, thought provoking conversations with her. She helps me sort through emotion and get down to the common sense. A few days before my wedding, she and I drove to Green Bay to pick up my sister-in-law at the airport. She took us out to dinner and it was the first time that we all really got to spend time together. I will never forget that day because she told us that she was so honored to finally have two daughters. She has always made me feel so loved.

But on Mother’s Day, I am always most grateful for my husband. It may sound silly but, without him, I wouldn’t be a mother. I don’t say that just because we created our children but because he makes me a better person, a better wife, and a better mother. He balances me. He is the yin to my yang, the fun to my stern, the peanut butter to my jelly. Without him, I couldn’t be half the mother that I am.

Mothers have a special bond with their children. A different bond with each one. Each of my children has made me a better mother in a different way. Mother’s Day would be nothing and I wouldn’t be who I am without them.

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