I have been mothered by a lot of ladies...most of them are still mothering me. Grandmothers, mothers of friends, my mom, my step mom, and aunts, just to name a few. I want to honor all of these ladies: they have all taught me so much about God, life, love, friendship, and what being a mom really looks like. My step mom (and let me just say here and now that I hate that term and try to avoid it. Normally, I just leave it off and call both my birth mom and my step mom "mom". You'll see shortly why I didn't just now) raised me like her own from the time I was 6, and, let me tell you, I didn't always make that easy. I owe her--and really all of these ladies--so much.
But today I want to talk about my birth mom. She found out she had cancer very soon after I was born, and, by the time I was 6 months old, she knew she wasn't going to beat it. She died when I was 18 months old.
I always thought it was only hard on my brother and me. I don't remember my mom; it feels like I never even knew her, and that has been a hard pill to swallow my whole life. What was she like? What did her laugh sound like? What made her happy? Am I anything like her? It's hard to have to ask those questions--and then take someone's word for it--about someone you're supposed to know so well.
Now I know: there is so much more to that story. It wasn't just hard for us kids. My mom lived for a year--and then died-- knowing that she was going to have to leave her babies, knowing that her only daughter wouldn't even remember one single thing about her. It was hard for her, too. So very hard.
I understand that now. My own sweet daughter turned two months old the day before Mother's day. I can't imagine leaving her. I can't imagine knowing that I was going to miss so much of her life. I can't imagine knowing that she wouldn't even know or remember me. I don't know how my mom did it. I pray I won't have to.
Little daughter, know this: your momma loves you completely. Forever and ever. Amen.