I’ve been thinking a lot about Mother’s Day, and thus, all the moms in my life who all mean so much to me. There are so many women who’ve really helped shape the way I mother our child, and the way I behave as a mother, I can’t even count them all.
Some, I’ve known my whole life. Since the moment I was born, my mom’s been a permanent fixture in my life. The person who’s there for me, regarding anything and everything at nearly any time. The women without whom I don’t even think I’d know how to be a good mother to RE, or (honestly) sometimes an imperfect mama to RE, and that it’s OK to be imperfect, to F up sometimes, to have a toddler who uses the word sh!t (correctly, mind you). Mom’s the one who taught me the value of sing-a-longs (no, we’re not talking Disney here; think Hello Dolly and “California Dreamin'”), dance-a-longs (Grease, Footloose, Dirty Dancing), and story telling. Mom taught me to bake and sew, two things I just may have surpassed her skills on…at least, I know I can rock a better chocolate chip cookie. Mom taught me that it’s OK to have cocktails at 3 in the afternoon with your good friend (I know, it was only once, but I’ll never forget it).
Other mamas came into my life as I was growing up…friend’s moms, moms who did things a little differently than my mom. Moms who didn’t wear sweats all day (I get it now, mom), who went to work outside the house (thank you for not), who made exotic things for dinner. But in the end, no matter how close I got to those moms, they weren’t my mom, and that’s the important part. The grass is never greener, and it took me a very long time to learn that.
Then, there’s my partner’s mom. Indirectly, she’s had a huge influence on the way I parent. She raised an amazing boy into an even more amazing man, who supports and loves me and helps me to be a pretty cool mom (he’s a pretty cool dad, too). He was raised to respect women, put the toilet seat down, eat his veggies and wear babies, and for this, I cannot thank his mother enough.
And of course, the mamas who came into my life after having had RE, and the friends who became mamas somewhere in there, the mamas who are now some of the most important people in my life, the women I count on day in and day out, to share the joys and challenges of parenting toddlers (and so many of you, infants). Women with whom I share ideas, creative recipes, and bitch sessions. Women whose birth stories have ignited fires within me, whose parenting stories have set off tears, and set us laughing ’till our sides hurt. These women are also, in large part, why I am who I am. Though the earliest foundation for being a mama came from home, more recent inspiration comes from friends (who are like home). For our friendships, I am eternally grateful, and I truly hope that someday, when our kids are all, like, 40, we’ll be sitting at their weddings telling stories about when they were babies.
I hope that someday, RE will think of mommy and remember singing to Mamma Mia in the car, dancing to rockabilly in the living room and “sewing” with me at the machine…it’s the everyday moments that become history, isn’t it?
Though I ran out of time to make you all something, I truly hope this letter can count as a Mother’s Day gift. I don’t know that you all know how much you mean to me…