My mom was my first culinary instructor. I grew up baking and cooking alongside her. I’ve written about that on here before. I still make her lasagna, pot pie, and one-skillet chicken dinner. Her chocolate chip cookie recipe is a very famous, back-of-the-package one, but people never believe that when they taste the cookies. People constantly ask for her recipe and when she tells them, they are surprised. She doesn’t alter the recipe at all, but for some reason they come out better than when anyone else attempts them. I guess some people just have the magic touch.
Possibly more important than baking skills, I have inherited many traits from my mother. She taught me to be ladylike, even though I grew up with six brothers, and only one sister. She taught me how to be a good wife and treat your husband right.
She raised me to be a strong, independent woman; a trait I think she sometimes feels I learned too well. She taught me that we’re always right, a trait others, for some reason, don’t appreciate as much as I do.
She taught me to love myself and my body. I never suffered from low self-esteem, and I think my parents are largely responsible for that. Don’t get me wrong, I never felt I was too hot to trot. I most definitely went through a long awkward phase, but both my parents always lifted my spirits. Birthday cards and letters from my mom always included the sentiment, “you are a beautiful young woman”, or something along those lines.
My mom has modeled what it means to be a Godly woman, even when you don’t want to be. She has held her head high and simultaneously been humble throughout her life.
She has five biological children, two step-children, and countless other “children”. Many friends of mine, past and present, and people I don’t know very well have looked to my mom to fill some mothering role they didn’t have. Many people have looked to her for advice, comfort, and friendship. My mom is a wise woman.
She has raised her children well. She was stern when she needed to be. She applied tough love when necessary, looked the other way when appropriate. She is still mothering all of us as adults, just in a different way. She gives advice and opinions when we need them, and she knows when to let us just do our own thing, even if she doesn’t completely agree with our decisions. She is a wonderful mother-in-law and grandmother. She has even embraced her feline grandsons. She is a dog person, but has her grand-cats’ photos displayed along with her grandchildren.
I have learned a lot from my mom, and I am still. I have no desire to have as many children as my mom does, but I hope to gain at least a small portion of her skill when it is my turn to be a mother.
I love you, Mom.
Aside from my awesome mom, there are a few other moms in my life I would like to share a little about.
Susan- My step-mom. She hasn’t been in my life very long, but she has made a valiant effort to become part of the family. And succeeded. She makes my dad happy, is great with my grandparents, and has welcomed me with open arms. I haven’t met all her children yet (they live across the country), but by the way she talks about them it is obvious she is a proud mama.
Joy- My sister-in-law. She started off as a young mom, and completed her family with my brother. She is raising a sweet young boy, and helping my niece become the dancing princess she is. She and my brother have made a beautiful family.
Elyse- My best friend. This is her first official Mother’s Day. Her precious baby, Jackson, was born just a couple weeks after Mother’s Day last year. She was born to be a mother; she was born with a strong desire to have children. She and her husband only have one now, but I don’t believe they’re finished. I have seen Elyse elated, frustrated, overwhelmed, tired, excited, and ridiculously full of joy in the last year. Watching her expel the mothering traits she was born with, and learn new ones, has been one of the happy points of the last year of my life. Elyse has been learning the ups and downs of motherhood, and has done it all with grace and style. I’m sure having the cutest baby in the world helps a little with that.
There are so many awesome moms in my life, and on the outskirts of my life. Recognizing each of them here would just be much too long of a post, and become a book. I have learned something of motherhood from each of them and cannot wait to become one myself.
Happy Mother’s Day to my mom, and to all the other fabulous mothers out there!