For as long as I can remember (at least 30 years), a book mark with a cute teddy bear holding a heart that reads “No Matter What, I Love You,” has been stuck in the corner of my bedroom mirror. On the back a message from my mother reads, “Shar – I hope your day went well. Love, Mom.” I have long forgotten the occassion or what I was doing that day to warrant the card, but I do remember the warm feeling of her love that washed over me when I found her note. Every once in a while I will pull it out to read her words, and tuck it back in the corner of the mirror. It makes me smile and feel special. I am blessed to have a thoughtful, caring and supportive mom. I am even more blessed she is still in my life. Happy Mother’s Day Mom! I love you.
Right above the card from my mom, is one from my youngest daughter, written in her then-kindgergartener handwriting, “I love you mom. I love you just the way you are,” it reads. Above my desk in my office cubicle (which due to COVID-19 I haven’t seen in a while) is a painting by my oldest daughter. She painted the word M-O-T-H-E-R along with descriptive words for each letter: aMazing, lOving, beauTiful, Humble, patiEnt, cReative. When I’m feeling like a “bad” mom, lacking and not enough, they remind me I am enough and I’m doing just fine (I had wonderful role-models – see above and below). Being the mother of these two kind-hearted, thoughtful, loving daughters makes my heart burst. I love them beyond words on this page could express. I am grateful that even though this quarantine is far from ideal, I was given a pause from all the craziness of life to be able to spend time with them, getting to know them better, laughing with them, crying together, arguing with each other, learning from each other and making memories. Our time together is fleeting – my oldest graduates from high school in two weeks and my youngest is in junior high. Sooner than I would like I know they will be out on their own and I will be an empty-nester. I am thankful for this time now. I am thankful I am their mom.
I admit I am sometimes sentimental. I tucked cards in my mirrors and saved letters in a shoe box. On Mother’s Day, not only do I reflect on how much I appreciate my own mom and the joy being a mother myself brings, but I reminisce on the smiles and love of my grandmothers. My maternal grandmother passed away 8 years ago this past week and my paternal grandma will be gone 23 years in July. Wow, I just realized I’ve been alive longer now without her than with. While I miss them both, I had a special bond with my paternal grandma. We had a life long letter writing campaign. She and my grandpa would pack up the pick up in October and head to Florida, returning in May. Right around now, they would be coming back to Ohio. The excitement and joy in my heart when they pulled into our driveway that first time after the long winter without them still brings a smile to my lips. In between we would write each other letters. The happiness of an envelope in the mail addressed to me in her handwriting never failed to make my day. I saved all her letters. Imagine my surprise after she passed away when I received a shoe box full of all my letters to her! I put our letters together in a huge binder. Now, on days like today, when I am missing her, I read through our letters. They still bring me joy! Happy Mother’s Day in heaven, Grandma A and Grandma C! I love you both!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms and grandma’s out there. Enjoy your day!