For All the Other Mothers

You may not be my actual mother. Some may say you don’t have kids.

It isn’t true.

Your impact on my life has been a profound gift and treasure.

As we celebrate mothers, I want you to know,

I see you,

I know how you helped raise me.

I am so grateful.

I am so lucky.

To my other mother, my theater coach, who told me the first time a guy hits you is the last time. I heard your voice over the years. I never let it happen again. You strengthened my voice. Thank you.

To my other mother, my high school teacher who made her class a safe place and gave me room to breathe. You were a gentle port in a storm. Thank you.

To my other mother, my college professor, who told me a lot of people will want me to do a lot of things. Do what I love. I have. Thank you.

To my other mother, my college advisor, who had a vision of me that was more than I believed. I have made it real. Thank you.

To my other mother, my mentor in grad school, who told me to nurture myself in the hard work, and gave me flowers and hope. I didn’t give up. The kids I’ve helped thank you. Thank you.

To my other mother, my godmother, who encouraged me to follow my dreams, and supported me spiritually as I headed out of my childhood home. Thank you.

To my other mothers, my older sisterfriends, who listen, gently nudge me to be myself, share their wisdom, and never write me off because of age. Thank you.

To my other mothers, my aunts. I have watched your lives, your struggles and triumphs and learned from you. I have always felt wrapped in your love. Thank you.

To my other mother, my sister, who packed my lunches, wiped my tears, went to school open-houses, slept on my floor in college when I was sick, helped me find myself when I was lost, and was there, is there, always. Thank you.

Happy Mother’s Day to you, my other mothers.

Thank you.

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