Behind every well-willed mother is a vision of who she has hoped and still aims to be as a mother. And within that vision, is a kaleidoscope of influences from other mothers who shape us to be the best we can in this journey. As we approach this Mother’s day, I’m reminded of who those people have been in my life. My role as a mother is ever-changing, always evolving and growing. I’m constantly saving scraps of advice and life lessons learned from these other mothers, admiring their strengths and trying to incorporate a little of it into my own life. Along my way, these are the people and the values which I treasure.
My mom, Molly: life and love. Not only did my mom bring me into this world, but she made it her mission as a mother to help me find a way to the spiritual world. She’s taught me what it means to love your children. Still to this day, her voice is the sweetest one to my ears of any other on the planet. There is no greater gift than love.
My step-mom, Carolyn: forgiveness, resilience, family values. Carolyn exemplifies forgiveness and how to love people through good and through bad times. As a parent and as a friend, she has shown me how to teach your kids that you will never stop loving them, no matter what they do. She is logical and loving, a friend for life.
My mother-in-law, Susan: Strength and ability, integrity, commitment. Susan has helped me be less intimidated of the world around me, infusing strength to my feeble, baby deer legs allowing me stand a bit better on my own. Her love for her grandchildren has blessed me, as it multiplies the amount of love they are surrounded by as they grow up.
My friend Jessica: Grace and adaptability. Jessica is an abundant resource of modern day, intelligent advice on how to raise children. She has also been a safe refuge where I can admit my inadequacies without feeling like I have failed. Jessica is the person who taught me it’s great to be a mom in spite of all the fears, flaws and frustrations that can come with it. I’ve always wanted to be a great mother to my kids, and in many ways she showed me how to not let myself get in the way of that.
My cousin Jenna: humor. This mother is so funny, her Christmas letters each year are more hysterical than anything I’ve ever seen on comedy central. I’m pretty sure all that I do when we get together is laugh until my sides hurt. She has such has such a fantastic brand of humor, which brings not only reasons to laugh, but also reasons to feel happy. And as we all know, a happy mom makes a happy household.
My cousin-in-law, Christa : Joyfulness. Christa has got to be the sweetest sole I’ve ever met. It’s impossible not to like her. She is purely joyful and sweet, which has always reminded me what a blessing it is to treat others this way, especially our children.
All mothers lead a legacy of top qualities, and many admirable attributes. I appreciate these mothers and the love, forgiveness, strength, grace, humor and joyfulness that they have shown me. May all the moms out there be cherished for what they do, on Mother’s Day and every day.