Thursday, May 14, 2009

Mother's Day

This is the first Mother's Day I can remember my kids being big enough to understand and appreciate. They wrote cards, drew pictures, gave flowers, framed hand prints, shared hugs and kisses. My husband gave me an enameled cast iron casserole pot and two pairs of flip flops for Mother's Day (at my request thank you very much). I felt pampered, loved, blessed. They didn't have to give me anything. I already have more than I could ever ask for. The most incredible gift I have ever received are my three children and my stepson. Being a Mom has been the hardest and most rewarding thing I have done in my life.

Six years ago on Mother's Day we conceived our identical twin girls. It has always struck me as so amazing and yet also so odd that I know not just the exact day, but the moment they began. My life has been so blessed by the existence of these two little miracles. My carbon copies who look so alike on the outside and are so very different on the inside. Their personalities, disposition, likes, and dislikes distinguish them as individuals. They are each their own person, both strong, funny, independent. My beautiful girls, I can't imagine just having one of them. They are like two halves of one whole and I would miss out on so much without them. The way they look at the world, their understanding of each other, they share a bond like no other. They have taught me to always be yourself, even if you happen to look like someone else and that a big belly laugh can be the best cure for what ails you.

Then there is my boy, Cameron. My old soul with his wit and charm, my ally and partner in crime, my critic and tough cookie, my independent dreamer with a heart bigger than anyone I know. He faces the challenges life hands him with strength, grace, and courage. He has taught me to appreciate each day and find happiness in the small things. He has given me the gift of hope, determination, and strength.

I can not forget the boy who let me practice my mothering skills on him before I gave birth to my first child, my stepson Chris. He is so lovely and amazing at 16. His smile lights up a room. He is an incredible big brother and role model for his younger siblings. He is turning into a responsible, respectful young man. One who is very different from his dramatic younger siblings. Chris is much more introverted than the rest of our kids. He finds the drama and humor that seem to be constant companions in our home, mildly amusing to say the least. My thoughts are that he puts up with us, all the while planning his escape to college in two years. I am so proud of him!

Being the mom of these four has made me a more powerful woman. I have found my voice and use it often and wisely. I have become an advocate for my children, speaking up when no one else will. I have learned that sometimes you have to say NO! I have discovered there is no stronger bond than that of a parent and child. I have found myself, as well as my inner child. I now know the joy of living in the moment, the sacrifice of giving everything for someone else. Nothing brings me more happiness than spending an afternoon listening to music with my kids, watching them dance and laugh. My house and heart are full of the joy of childhood. So, I am sharing two of my favorite photos of my babies when they were little - the lights of my life, as my dad used to say "the apple of my eye".Thank you to my babies for choosing me to be their Momma. I can't imagine one moment of my life without you in it, you shape my world!

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