Mother's Day means alot to me because I am lucky enough to have one of the best mother's in the world: Bernice Bachman. She is everything I strive to be in a Mom: patient, loving (I never had or will ever have a single doubt that I am loved, unconditionally), forgiving, playful, sympathetic, smart, she gives good advice and listens better than anyone I know. She's a great grandmother to my two boys (who ADORE her!). Although my parents live ten hours away from me, I feel their presence strongly every day because Mom and I talk alot on the phone. We keep each other going sometimes. She really is fantastic and I hope she knows how much she means to me.
Sadly, all of my grandparents are now gone, but I had two completely different yet amazing grandmothers who were both strong, opinionated, powerful women who raised large families practically single-handedly. They were both tiny, and so sweet, but they didn't take no guff from anyone, least of all their towering sons. It was always funny to see one of my big, strong uncles cowering in front of one of these little ladies. They helped shape me into the woman I am: independent and convinced of my own worth. I miss them, and I'm glad I was able to know them as well as I did.
Married life has given me the chance to adopt some surrogate women in my life: two grandmothers, a mother, and a sister. My husband's family is wonderful, and I know how often in-laws are a dreaded part of married life. Not so for me. I'm happy to spend time with my family: we go shopping, hang out, have holiday celebrations, you name it. They are truly a part of my family, not just my husband's family. My mother-in-law, Laura, is always there for me. She's funny, smart, and one of the kindest people I've known. She is truly a gentile Southern woman. Grandmother, my husband's paternal grandmother, is the strong, accomplished woman you think of as running a plantation or her own company. She gets what she wants, yet she is always more than generous to everyone. My husband's maternal grandmother, Nanny, lives about eight hours away from us, so I've only had the opportunity to meet her a few times. Each time was so good: she's sweet, soft-spoken and gentle. I hope to come to know her more. Amy is my husband's sister, and the closest I'll ever have to a sister of my own (I'm an only child). She and I are like peas in a pod: sometimes we get on each other's nerves, but we're always glad to know the other is there. She's a Mom, and though her style of parenting is very different from mine, she's really good at it and her son is a testament to the great job she is doing. Amy is so creative, fun, inspiring, and adventurous that she makes me feel daring; she sets me up to take risks and explore life knowing she's got my back.
Finally, there are two other people I cherish on Mother's day and they aren't mothers. In fact, they aren't even women! They are two little boys, and they bless me every single day with their presence and the most wonderful title in the world: Mom. Xavier and Corwin are the best things that have ever happened to me. They make me a better person, they make me want to be better, all day, every day. They show me joy, laughter, love, and grace in every moment. Don't get me wrong, they are still rambuncious boys and sometimes things are rocky (or at least loud!) around here, but I wouldn't trade my hardest day with the for the best day without them. They are the loves of my life.
Ok, all the mushy stuff being said, I'm working on Mother's Day gifts. I adore making gifts for people. However, I don't adore the nervous feeling I get before I give it to them. I already sent my Mom's gifts off and I hope they get there in time for Mother's Day (I hate that she and I don't get to be together). I know my Mom will love anything I make her because she loves me and by extension anything that comes from me. I get more worried when it comes to my husband's family. What if they hate it? What if it seems hokey or silly? What if they don't get it or appreciate the hard work I put into it? What if they are polite to my face, and then it never sees the light of day again? ::sigh:: I go through this every gift-giving occassion. BUT! I keep trying, keep making, keep giving, and so far, so good. :) Now, I gotta get to work on these gifts!
Happy Mother's Day, to everyone, everywhere! Take the time to care for someone today and everyday, especially yourself. You don't have to be someone's Mom to be their hero, their security blanket, their friend. :)