Dear Mom, on this Mother’s Day

I will not begin to pretend to know what it’s like to grow another human within my own body, but I can wonder at the majesty of such. What an incredible responsibility to provide protection and nourishment, to sacrifice one’s own comfort day and night for months, then, continuing to protect and nurture these tiny humans till they can adequately care for themselves – and then for some of those to repeat the process. Mothers are indeed the real super heroes of the world, and you are mine.

I imagine that you spent many a moment standing over our cribs when we were young, just watching our chests rise and fall, and listening to us breathe, wondering what we were thinking, wondering what our first words would be, and what kind of people we would become. Now we watch you and wonder the same. What was it like for you to speak to us without knowing how much we understood?

As I sit with you today on Mother’s Day, and listen to the sweet sound of your breathing, I recall that most of what is good in me, I got from you. You taught, not only with words, but with actions. You demonstrated selfless service throughout your life. You passed on to me a love of reading by reading to me. You taught me patience through your own long-suffering. You taught me the importance of quality time. You always showed an interest in my life, and took the time to listen. If I grew into a good human, it is because I had a great example to follow.

When I speak to you now, you turn your head and look me in the eyes. I cannot know if you understand my words, but I would swear that you tried to smile at me today – and I do miss that smile.

For now we will watch you breathe, and wonder what you are thinking – and we wonder what your first words will be, and why the world doesn’t have enough people like you.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.