I have read so many great posts on motherhood over the past couple of days, and after this weekend, my heart is so incredibly full. Sometimes in the midst of chaos, I think I can forget what a true blessing it is. How lucky I am to have two sweet, healthy children. How incredibly blessed I am to have a mom who is still around and lives nearby. How wonderful it is to have married a man who has a great mom, too, as well as a grandmother that would probably let me move in if I wanted to. I often take for granted the fact that I have two sisters whom I see often, who are not only awesome mothers, but such good aunties to my kids. Then I have a sister-in-law who I miss dearly every single day, because she is my phone call when I need a good laugh... my niece (her daughter) does the cutest darn things. I have some amazing aunties myself, and now being grown up and having nieces and nephews of my own, I so deeply appreciate them. My husband works side-by-side with a woman who has such a great relationship with her two kids, both older than mine, and I look up to her tremendously. One of my best friends has four (yes, FOUR!) and kept her sanity and did a great job with them even while her husband was deployed for a year. Another new (but already incredibly close) friend here has FIVE... and will bend over backwards to do something for others. I have friends from blogging, and even though I've never met their children, their pictures and stories make me feel like I just saw them yesterday, and I love "knowing" their kids and what kinds of moms they are. I have moms in my life with one, two, three, four, and five kids. I have moms with twins and moms with kids so close in age they might as well be! I know moms who have lost a child and moms who have prayed fervently that their child would pull through sickness. I have moms in my life who were not planning on being moms and some that went through great lengths to become one. When I look back on my life, I have always been surrounded by some pretty phenomenal women, most of which were mothers to their own kids, but still showed so much love and kindness to me. I think your heart expands in ways that cannot be explained when you become a mom. Sure your belly grows, but it (somewhat) goes back to it's original size, but everyday I find that I have more love, more compassion, more care, more hurt, more empathy, and more to give of myself to others than ever before. Motherhood is an amazing gift, not just because it gives us some pretty incredible kids to love on, but because of the ways it changes you. I can't imagine my life right now without this gift, and I'm thankful for a weekend that allowed me to just stop for a minute, turn off the chaos, and just focus on how special it really is. And to all of the special mamas in my life, I just want to thank you, too. You have impacted me and help shape me as a mother everyday. We're better together, and I'm blessed to be surrounded by some incredibly strong moms who make me want to become a better one. Happy Mother's Day to you all!
|Me and my Mama before my wedding|
|My mother-in-law snuggling with my Jake|
|My Nana... whom we miss dearly this year|
|MawMaw Brenda... kissing on her great grandson|
|Aunt B and Carol... aunties who love us like our own mothers. Miss you, too, Aunt B!|
|Aunt Claudia - one of the strongest moms I know|
|Aunt Karen and her girls... one of my mama role-models for sure!|
|My sister Angie and her boys.|
|My other sister, Mindy, and sweet Adam|
|My sister-in-law, Ginny, and cutie-pie Baby Skye|
|Gretchen - our other pastor's wife and a rockstar mom|
|Cory and three of the five... how does she do it?|
|Kristen, who has been my friend since high school and our kids FINALLY got to meet a few weeks ago!|
|Abby: Mother of three (two of which are twins) and rock-star triathlete|
|My best blog-buddy... hoping to meet your kiddos this summer!|
|Chelsea loving on sweet Charley... the youngest of her four|
There are SOOOO many others and I hope you know who you are, but finding and swiping Facebook and blog pictures took much longer than I thought! :) And I certainly hope you don't mind that I stole some sweet moments from you ladies!
And in other mom news... please check my sister's blog HERE for a little update from her.