My friend Wendy doesn’t have a blog. I know, I need to whip out my blogging charm on her. I sit here at 7 am on a Saturday, unable to sleep. I have been sick and up since 5. Wendy sent this e-mail to me and it made me cry, and cough harder, and get more stuffed up. I thought that this e-mail went perfectly with my recent Mothering 101 post.
Happy Mother’s Day.
MOTHERS and MOMS
This is for the mothers who have sat upall night with sick toddlers in their arms,wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayerwieners and cherry Kool-Aid saying,’It’s okay honey, Mommy’s here.’
Who have sat in rocking chairs for hours on endsoothing crying babies who can’t be comforted.
This is for all the mothers who show up atwork with spit-up in their hair and milk stainson their blouses and diapers in their purse.
For all the mothers who run carpools andmake cookies and sew Halloween costumes.And all the mothers who DON’T.
This is for the mothers who gave birth to babies they’ll never see. And the motherswho took those babies and gave them homes.
This is for the mothers whose priceless artcollections are hanging on their refrigerator doors. And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football or soccer games insteadof watching from the warmth of their cars. And that when their kids asked, ‘Did you see me,mom?’ they could say, ‘Of course, I wouldn’t havemissed it for the world,’ and mean it.
This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for ice cream before dinner. And for all the mothers who count to ten instead, but realize how child abuse happens.
This is for all the mothers who sat down with their children and explained all about making babies. And for all the (grand)mothers who wanted to, but just couldn’t find the words.
This is for all the mothers who go hungry, so their children can eat.
For all the mothers who read ‘Goodnight, Moon’ twice a night for a year. And then read it again, ‘Just one more time.’
This is for all the mothers who taught their children to tie their shoelaces before they started school. And for all the mothers who opted for Velcro instead.
This is for all the mothers who teach their sons to cook and their daughters to sink a jump shot.
This is for every mother whose head turns automatically when a little voice calls ‘Mom?’ in a crowd, even though they know their own offspring are at home — or even away at college — or have their own families.
This is for all the mothers who sent their kids thinking they’d be just FINE once they got there, only to get calls from the school nurse an hour later asking them to please pick them up. Right away.
This is for mothers whose children have gone astray, who can’t find the words to reach them.
For all the mothers who bite their lips until they bleed when their 14 year olds dye their hair green.
For all the mothers of the victims of recent school shootings, and the mothers of those who did the shooting. For the mothers of the survivors, and the mothers who sat in front of their TVs in horror, hugging their child who just came home from school, safely.
This is for all the mothers who taught their children to be peaceful, and now pray they come home safely from a war.
What makes a good mother anyway? Is it patience? Compassion? Broad hips? The ability to nurse a baby, cook dinner, andsew a button on a shirt, all at the same time? Or is it in her heart?
Is it the ache she feels when she watches her son or daughter disappear down the street, walking to school alone for the very first time?
The jolt that takes her from sleep to dread, from bed to crib at 2 A.M. to pu ther hand on the back of a sleeping baby? The panic, years later, that comes again at 2 A.M.when she just wants to hear their key in the door and know they are safe again in her home?
Or the need to flee from wherever she is and hug her child when she hears news of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?
The emotions of motherhood are universal and so our thoughts are for young mothers stumbling through diaper changes and sleep deprivation… And for mature mothers learning to let go.
For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers. Single mothers and married mothers. Mothers with money, mothers without.
This is for you all. For all of us… Hang in there. In the end we can only do the best we can. Tell them every day that we love them. And pray and never stop being a mother…Please pass along to all the mothers in your life.