May 9, 2010 - A Mixed Mother's Day

How to describe life since my beautiful Georgia decided my motherhood would begin on October 13, 2009? One strong word would be growth. My heart is larger, my love for my husband is larger, my waistline (yes) is larger, my laundry pile is larger, my grocery bill is larger, my to do list is larger and most importantly my life is larger. For years I've heard parents describe how wonderful it is to have a child, but it wasn't until I spent those first moments more than six months ago with my little lovely that I actually understood. And I don't believe it's a feeling you can capture with words, so I won't belittle it by trying here.

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And now I've joined the part of humanity with a day dedicated in their honor, mother's day. My first gift? I got to sleep in this morning. When Georgia awoke, my husband scooped her up and left the room while I continued to dream until 11 a.m! Lovely. I never knew sleep would become a treasured gift in my life one day. My husband and dear daughter also decided to feed my ravenous appetitite for photography by gifting me with a Nikon SB600 Speedlight. Yipee!

My best gift though, spending the day with my two favorites. After a brunch of bagels and coffee, we headed out to the local botanical garden.

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Even though winter is not releasing the Midwest from its grasp so easily, we decided just to bundle up and lose ourselves amongst the flowers and trees and birds and sidewalks, nooks and crannies.

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Georgia even decided to test my motherhood on this day, giving me that baby bird gaping mouth in the middle of the garden with no bathroom to duck into in sight. So we found a quite bench tucked behind a tree for me to nurse her - first time in public.

We finished the day with dinner and chocolate cake - a lovely day for me.

But entwined in all of the day's happiness, a shadow of melancholy. My first mother's day as a mother and without my mother. I saw a Hallmark commercial the other day (by the way, since my mother's death I've come to hate all Hallmark commercials) where the now grown up daughter was visiting her mother on mother's day. The mother goes inside, pulls out a treasured box that holds all the mother's day cards her daughter had given her in the past - cards with crayon scribbles and a child's penmanship. The cards progress through the years. Then cue this year's card, where the daughter is now obviously a mother herself. In the card she had written "from one mom to another." I wanted that, I wanted to spend mother's day with my mother as a mom myself. Today it was glaringly obvious that will never happen.

I do wish though my mother had lived long enough for me to tell her thank you as a mom. I told my mom I loved her and thanked her for all she did many times through the years, but I never understood the depth of all she did, until now. I never understood how much she loved me, until now. I never knew how her life started and ended with me, until now. I mean, I've always known she loved me, but until I became a mother myself, the sheer overwhelming magnitude of that love was something that I could not grasp. I wish now that I see it with a heart wide open, that I could thank her from that heart and give her a thank you that knows and understands. I hope from the heavens she knows, and understands.

I miss you mom and love you so much. I ask God every night to deliver that message to you. Are you receiving them? I hope so. Happy Mother's Day.

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So my mother's day was full of rain, but a lot of sunshine between the showers. And it's that sunshine I'm going to focus on. I've got my umbrella handy, I can handle the rain. And besides, I've got my sunshine in my arms to dance in the rain with me. Who couldn't smile with that? Thank you sunshine for making me a mommy and letting me love you.

Happy Mother's Day to you all.

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