This isn’t a letter about your wonderful attributes during a pandemic. As a matter of fact, this is the last sentence you will read from me that references COVID-19. This is simply an appreciation letter to you and all that you do. A dear friend of mine once told me, “You are exactly the mother that your children need,” and it made my heart burst with joy and eyes swell with tears. I was so happy to hear and I so needed to hear it. Being a parent is definitely a role of a lifetime where you truly learn as you go. As a matter of fact, I’ve learned my best skills (outside of waiting tables) from being a mother. Everyday is a new experience, and the moment I think I’ve got my role down, I get thrown for a loop. I fix lunches for the next day and my son decides he wants to buy lunch like his best friend. I feel confident and prepared for my big presentation set for the morning, and my daughter comes into the room at 2am with a fever and vomit down her shirt. Parenthood is not for a faint of heart. But, as I reflect on my friend’s word, I realize that you need to hear the same thing she told me because it’s so easy to doubt ourselves as mothers:
You are exactly the mother that your child(ren) need.
You hear them when they need to vent (even when you don’t understand the issue).
You fix them their favorite meals when they’ve had a hard day (yes, McDonald’s counts).
You help them with their homework (and finish the projects after they’ve gone to sleep).
You find ways to stretch a dollar so that they won’t know you’ve entered the “broke” week right before payday.
You hustle to make more money because this year they decided to take up another activity.
You’ll be the bad guy and tell them “no” if it teaches them a lesson and keeps them out of trouble.
For stay at home moms: You entered a whole new world of payless work to be around full-time for your babies.
For work outside the home moms: You do your work late into the night and early in morning so that your babies get all of you before they fall asleep.
You teach them lessons that simply can’t be taught in school.
You venture into their world to learn more about them just so that you can parent them they way that need it.
You invite them into your world so they’ll know you’re a woman with interests and passion, not just their diaper changing, lunch making, clothes cleaning Mom.
You don’t hide your faults so that they will know you’re human.
You cheer them on when they succeed, hold them when they fall, and encourage them when they doubt.
You act a little crazy, just so they’ll know you’re not afraid to go there.
You are a leader and role model to your kids.
You’re Mom. Superwoman. Human. Friend. Advocate. Cheerleader. Parent.
You are exactly what they need and they are exactly what you need. Enjoy your day and celebrate your role.
Happy Mother’s Day!