The word mom changes when you, yourself, become one. Now that I'm a mom I understand my mom just that much better and I appreciate her more than ever. Being a mom is a never-ending job. There is no break. Ever. No weekends. No vacation days. No sick days. If you take your job seriously, you are always on. I am forever changed since becoming a mom, and today, on my 1st Mother's Day, I want to talk about my mom.
Back when she found out I was expecting, her and my dad decided to spend the summer living in NC, so last June they drove across the country and moved into a rented apartment just 2 miles from my house. My due date wasn't until the end of the month, but my mom insisted she be here that entire month, in case Trace decided to make his debut early. Lucky for us Trace came on time, so we were able to spend that month together, just us.
I was admitted to the hospital in the morning and after a long and intense labor and attempt at delivery, I was rushed into an emergency c-section. Trace was born on June 26th and I'll never forget how much my mom's presence meant to me. I was exhausted after his birth. I could hardly think let alone welcome visitors into my room. My mom just knew I needed time. She made my stay in the hospital just that much easier for me.
After I was released from the hospital into the unknown world of parenthood my mom said "While you are taking care of your baby, I am here to take care of mine." And that's just what she did. My mom took care of me, which in turn gave me the ability to fully concentrate on Trace's needs. She came over every single day, making me healthy and delicious homemade lunches and often making sure dinner was covered as well. She was constantly concerned about how my c-section incision was healing, and for someone who never had one, she was incredibly understanding of what a major surgery and recovery it was. She also forced me to take naps and was a shoulder to cry on. Having a newborn at home is an isolating time in life, but thankfully my mom provided me with the necessary socialization and laughter that that every new mom needs, but most importantly, that I needed. And she didn't stop doing this after 1 week or 1 month. No. She continued to come over consistently for 2.5 months after Trace's birth, until she went back to California in the early fall.
I'll never forget the morning I hit the lowest of lows. It was roughly 4 days after I brought Trace home from the hospital and at the time I knew it, but looking back now I still believe that it was the lowest I'd ever been in my life. When all you hear from outsiders is that this is the happiest time in your life, I was feeling awful. I called my mom in hysterics and explained what had happened and how I had felt. I will never forget her words to me, for they were some of the most powerful, life changing words I'd ever heard -- She said "You have to do what makes you the best mother to that little boy. Whatever that may be, all throughout your life, do what makes you the best mom to him." Wow. Just wow. In that moment my life changed. I can't tell you what a weight was lifted off of my shoulders. I didn't need to do things the right way or the way the doctors said or what some book or forum suggested... I just needed to ask myself "Will this make me the best mom to Trace that I can be?"
I want to thank you for always giving me your best you. Today is my 1st time getting to celebrate Mother's Day as a mom, but all I can think about is you. You're one hell of a mom and always have been. My transition into mommyhood was made so much easier thanks to you. You nourished my body by keeping me fed so that I was able to nourish my sons body. You have given me the best advice, yet have encouraged me to trust my instincts. You have praised my decisions, been my number one cheerleader and have helped me find humor in just about everything. Being a stay at home mom isn't for the faint of heart, but throughout my childhood you made seem so effortless. Within the past year you have uprooted your life, extended your apartment lease in North Carolina, fly back and forth every 6-8 weeks... all for me (who am I kidding, all for Trace). I get it. I understand. Now that I'm a mom, I would do the exact same thing. I will do the exact same thing. There truly is nothing like a mothers love...
Happy Mother's Day, mom! I appreciate you more now than ever.