TO EVERY MOTHER
Mom let’s start with you. Because if you and Dad didn’t have (you know what) on new years eve on that California night in 1976, there wouldn’t be me. Or my babies. Or my life. So you win.
Also, you’re the fundamental reason and every other reason that I am a mother and a good one to boot. But that’s only because you raised all four of us. You taught us right. You pushed us hard. And you never lost sight of your prayer for us. And you’ve still not. Not to mention you started and finished college, obtained a Masters and became a professor while mothering 4 of us (especially difficult teenager me) and managed to kick ass and take names. All of this contributes to how I mother. How I dream. And how I love my family.
So you win. And I love you more than words.
To my great grandmother who wore cash dollars in her pantyhose so not to lose it in her old age…you’re my kinda woman. I miss you.
To my Grandma Joan who endured more pain than a mother ever should, yet seamlessly smiled and loved me tender while smoking those brown cigarettes. If I can gather up half the strength you had while here on earth, I’ll even call myself a hero.
To my Grandma Esther Kealoha who’s name I carry every day. If i could have just one more day to ask you everything I would. Your Hawaiian spirit runs through me and your great granddaughter like water down the river.
To every mother in my family including my brilliant sister and wives of my brothers, if I could just tell you what I learned in that delivery room year after year after year. How holding your newborn babies, how it shaped me, molded me and prepared me.
To my mother in law, I wish I could spend a day with you learning every inch of your story. And knowing the root of your success with Dad.
To my stepsons mom, I’m grateful for every day you mother my stepson, because his love rubs off on every centimeter of his siblings.
And to the women I don’t know, the women I do know, and the women I see all around me all day every day.
To every mother.
To every mother who’s ever been pregnant
To every mother who’s ever given birth
To every newborn mother who’s not sleeping
To every mother who’s child is heading off to college
To every mother who’s work schedule is breaking her heart
To every mother who stays home and wishes for a hefty paycheck
To every mother who’s adopted
To every mother who gave up their child
To every mother who’s mothered other’s children
To every mother who’s lost a child
To every mother who’s child has special needs
To every mother who’s lost a mother
To every mother who doesn’t talk to her mother
To every mother who does it alone
I commend you. I honor you. I treasure you. We are all so different. We are all very much the same. We all came from our mother. Our scars are rooted from the women before us. Our strengths are rooted in them too.
Sometimes it’s easy. Sometimes it’s unyielding.
But our place on the motherhood board is equal. It’s not a quest for first place. Or perfection. Or praise.
Every mother, we are the warriors of the pack. We have carried, nurtured, grown, fed, cleaned, healed, and loved our children. We have loved our mothers. We have gone beyond the measures that were laid upon us. And we are the heroes in our own stories.
Today I pray you know this truth. That it hovers over you like the rainbow after a storm. Whether you’re surrounded by your children smothering you in kisses today or not, whether your mother is sitting to your left or you’ve never even met her, may you know that the love is there. It’s always been there. Whether it’s been spoken or rested quiet in silence, may you know. You are loved.
I love you. I love you all. Happy mother’s day warriors.