I am the person I am today because of you. Your words of wisdom are sprinkled all over my life.
I hear you when I tell the boys to shut off the tv and go outside. I think of you when I look at my book shelf.
I think of you whenever I touch a sewing machine.
I remember walking downstairs and finding you first thing in the morning on the couch in your nightgown. A coffee, book and journal in hand. Your legs were always swept up to one side.
I never asked what you were reading.
I remember when Jack was just a baby thinking how I spent so much time reading about parenting and for some reason I thought you never did. I was very naive. Then we had a garage sale and I saw the stack of parenting books you were selling. You must have tucked them away so we never saw. I'm sorry for judging you.
I remember dinners so vividly. We always ate around the table. You gave us a gift I didn't realize at the time. We eat dinner at the table almost every night because of you and Dad.
I once read that you learn more from the hard times than the good... and it's true. We went on some rollercoasters, and I learned, you learned... and at the end we always found each other.
I can tell you anything. Which hasn't always been true. But I'm glad that it is now. I don't feel judged and I like that we can entertain totally wild ideas together.
I cannot tell you how much I love that I can call you and I know you will be here if I asked. You are always there. You value being with us and family so much.
You give until there's nothing left to give. You are one of the most generous souls I know. You bend over backwards for people. Sometimes I want to say "no" for you, ha!
I love that you're always up for a walk.
I love making strawberry jam with you.
I remember watching you put curlers in your hair and the way the bathroom smelled of perfume before you went out with Dad.
I remember all the prayers.
I remember how Christmas morning was always perfect. We had to wait at the top of the steps while you put on Christmas music and got the camera ready.
I remember sitting on your lap when I was probably 5. We were at a bonfire and I kept drifting in and out of sleep, always waking with my head on your shoulder. It's one of my favorite memories.
I remember waking up on the couch after a long family outing... you'd be dressing me into pj's. Drifting in and out of sleep.
I remember you in the stands cheering me on.
I remember you and Dad taking me to a special sports shop to buy the most expensive soccer cleats I had ever seen.
I remember the Champ motto... "We finish everything! No quitting." That lesson alone was such a gift.
You always questioned things. You went against the grain, you taught me to be a dreamer.
I love that you're not vein. You never took me to get my nails done, and I'm kind of glad. You didn't focus on outer appearances much. You spent your money else where. I even remember lipstick on your teeth, but I absolutely love those memories. I'm not kidding :)
I love that you love to eat outside.
I remember asking you if I could date Joel. I wasn't technically allowed to date yet, ha! You didn't completely say no... and you kept an open mind.
I remember when I told you I was going to homeschool, which was totally scary at first and you had nothing but positive and supportive things to say. I appreciate those words in the beginning of my journey so much. You believed in my ability and were very excited for us. You were my only cheerleader during that time. Thank you.
There have been a lot of goodbyes these past couple years.
I know life is not forever, but it's made me think of Mother's Day in a totally different way. I'm just happy my Mother is here. It's not about me anymore and what do I get...
And I've said it before and it makes me cry just to think about it. I know God gave me Jack on your birthday for a reason. It's so I'm not a total mess on that day every year, because we can't all live forever.
And when I think about the sacrifices, prayers and worry I have for my own children... things they will never know, I know you experienced the same with me. Things I will never know. Thank you for loving me. For having me... even when Grandpa got pissed. haha. If it wasn't for your stubborn ways I wouldn't be here. If you played it safe I wouldn't be here.
Thank you for being you. I love you just the way you are.
Happy Mother's Day,