Today is my mom's birthday. I would like to pause today to tell you a little about my mom because she is quite a woman. I wish I had my mom's gift with words to fully describe her to you.
My mom is the youngest of four kids. Though she was the littlest and would never grow taller than any of her siblings I believe she developed a loud voice to make sure she was heard. I'm not speaking in terms of volume, but instead in terms of strength, persuasion and moral conviction. I've never heard one story about my mom in which she didn't set her mind to an accomplishment and then live to fulfill her goal.
Her passion in life has been to give to others. Last year my mom retired from school teaching. She taught high school students. By choice, she taught the students that no one else wanted; kids with severe learning and behavioral challenges. Even bigger than just choosing them, she loved them. I have watched my mom sit beside hospital beds and provided care to loved ones as well as acquaintances who had no one else. She aches with the pain that her family and friends feel. She brings new meaning to the word compassion. I have never seen any one who has given more to others than my mom.
A few years ago, my mom realized that she had neglected herself during all of her years of taking care of others. Upon realizing this, my very brave mom had the courage to begin a journey to nurture herself. She made some very hard choices and followed her heart.
Today, my mom is happier than I have ever seen her. She has been a true example to me. Daily she is teaching me the importance of being compassionate to others as well as ourselves. Her strength has given me courage. We have not always understood each other, but I am so glad that she is my mom. I am equally astounded by the similarities and differences that I see in us. I'm glad that she chose to have one little girl 30 years ago and I am eternally grateful that it was me. Now, as a mother myself, I recognize the challenge that motherhood is and the sacrifices she has made for my best interests.
When I say that my mom is my hero, I do not speak it lightly. She is an amazing woman! I am honored to be her daughter.
Happy Birthday Mom! I love you!