To my Mom,
First and foremost, I want you to know how thankful I am for the life that you gave my sisters and me. We had everything we could have ever wanted and you treated us with respect and love. Thank you for believing in us and teaching us that even as girls, we could do anything we wanted in life. Both you and Dad have always put our needs before your own. Even now, you spend countless hours at our houses helping with projects or caring for our children (or pets). Instead of resting or working on your own to do list, you are often times at one of our three houses. I know the first year in our house, you were here countless weekends doing everything you could to help. And when both boys came along, you spent a week with me to help me get used to motherhood. You are always there for me to talk to and as I’ve gotten older, you have become my best friend.
As young children, we were lucky. You always made us laugh, built incredible blanket forts, made curtains for our performances, and pretended like our performances and dances were astounding. Thank you for playing games with us, chasing us around, tickling us, and hiding and jumping out to scare us. You spent your summer days taking us to the pool (almost every single day) which couldn’t have been easy. Thank you for sledding with us, taking us to the movies, and letting us stay out late at night with our neighborhood friends playing midnight. You and the other Moms in the neighborhood truly made our street a wonderful place to grow up. Our birthday parties were always exciting, especially our treasure hunts. Thank you for giving up your birthday celebration so you could celebrate ours (having all three of your kids birthdays within the same week as yours can’t be fun. Now, you have to share your birthday week with five of us). Thank you for giving us wonderful memories with you and Dad. Thank you for being involved in every aspect of our lives.
I am sure that you felt you made mistakes along the way (what Mom doesn’t), but I can’t tell you one. I don’t remember the mistakes – if we were late to something, forgot something at home, if you yelled too much one time or accidentally missed that I had wandered off and bumped my head; I don’t remember. Because in the end, we only remember the things that matter. I try to remind myself that now as a Mom but it’s hard.
I always appreciated you and Dad. But I never fully appreciated you until I had children of my own. The days are long and exhausting. There is no true guidebook on how to raise children. You do what’s best and sometimes it’s not the right thing. I had no idea how hard it would be to make a simple decision like whether or not I should let the baby sleep 10 more minutes or wake them so they aren’t up all night. Every single move you make as a Mom is filled with doubt and confusion. On top of it, you have all sorts of Mom-shamers making you feel like you made the wrong choice. I had no idea that you went through all of this (times three). And the fact that you had twins is something I cannot even imagine.
More than anything, I never knew the pain of loving someone so much that it hurts. That you could love someone so much that when they bumped their head, you wanted to cry, too. Or that when you couldn’t understand what your child needed that it would break your heart. I knew I would love my boys but I never understood the type of bond a Mother has with a child until I had one of my own. And I never knew that you could love one as much as the other (I was so worried when I was pregnant with Jack).
Thank You, Grammy
On top of being an amazing Mom, you have been a wonderful Grammy. Thank you for being by my side for Carl’s and Jack’s births and for kissing their skinned knees and bumped heads. Thank you for watching the boys so that we can have a date night or run errands. Thanks for putting up with my ridiculous babysitting notes and for understanding my need to write a book every time we leave (it is just who I am). You and Dad have provided us with clothes, toys, and more to help ease the cost of having children. Thank you for the phone and Facetime calls and for listening to them even when you have no idea what they’re saying. Thank you for acting excited and interested when Carl tells you the same story for the hundredth time. Thank you for learning to love trains, trucks, cars, mixers, mowers, and vacuums. Thank you for sharing in Carl’s love of baking. Thank you for knowing their fears and for protecting them from harm. Thank you for keeping up with Jack and having the energy to keep him safe. Thank you for helping to teach them to share. Thank you for teaching them to love and how to care for others. Thank you for making them feel special.
Thank you for understanding that I am protective of them and that sometimes I may ask you to do something crazy and you comply. I know I don’t say it enough, but I appreciate you. We wouldn’t trade you for any other Grammy in the world. Thank you for being you. And most of all, thank you for loving my boys (like I do).
Happy Mother’s Day to you and all of the wonderful Mother’s out there. Thank you for doing what you do. You keep the world running.