A Mother's Day Letter To My Mom, Now That I Am One

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Dear Mom -

This Mother's Day, I wanted to thank you for all of the things I wasn't capable of TRULY appreciating until I became a mom. So thank you , Mom, for:

  1. Giving Birth to Me: For carrying me around in your belly for 9 months, eating carefully to help me grow, and then giving birth to me naturally because you believed that was the safest way to bring me into the world, pain be damned. And then caring for me, with kindness, every day and night until I left for college.
  2. Your Extraordinary Patience: When I think back now, I can remember only a handful of times either of you raised your voices or got fed up with us, which is quite astonishing, given the daily trials and tribulations of two girls. I still don't understand how you did that. I'm hoping to learn soon, before my children can remember...
  3. Tolerating All My Phases: From a crying baby to a cranky teenager, you put up with all the annoying parts of childhood with grace. I felt like you'd never give up on me, no matter what.
  4. Being a Great Listener: When I talk, you listen intently. You're careful how to respond so as not to hurt my feelings, even when I might deserve harsh criticism. Sure, you like to give me advice when I don't ask for it too - but hey, that's what moms are for, right?
  5. Believing in Me: I never, ever, felt like there was anything I couldn't do. You instilled such confidence in me that I was never scared to try something new. I grew up feeling smart, powerful, and ready to conquer whatever challenges life brought my way.
  6. Being My #1 Fan: You were there for every cheerleading performance, ever soccer and softball game, every science fair and school play. When I stunk, you didn't say so. When I was pretty good, you made me feel like I was awesome.
  7. Having My Back: I always felt you were on my side, no matter what battle I was fighting, from the 5th grade "I Hate Michelle Club" my best friend created, to the high school soccer coaches who cut me from the roster with no explanation. You stepped in when you needed to, but if I asked, you also respected me enough to stay out of it, even when all the other parents said you shouldn't. 
  8. Letting Me Know You Are ALWAYS There: All my life, from zero to forty, I've known you are there for me. I can call you before the crack of dawn or wake you in the middle of the night and you will be there to listen, to comfort, to help in any way you can. Even to this day, if I have an emergency, I know that you are willing to fly from Florida to Texas as soon as you can pack and get to the airport. You are my rock.
  9. Being Dr. Howell: Okay, I'll admit this one can drive me crazy sometimes, but it's nice to know if I have any medical question, you will track down the answer. Or fifty answers.
  10. Teaching Me Helpful Life Lessons: You taught me that life isn't always fair. You taught me to feel sorry for the bullies and mean girls - that there was something wrong with them, not me. You taught me to work hard to get what I want. You taught me to be brave, even when it sucks to be brave. You taught me kindness. You taught me how to be a good friend. You taught me that anything is possible, even magic and miracles.

I love you, Mom. Thank you for being my miracle.

Love, Michelle