Happy birthday, mama

While we are not back to our regularly scheduled blog rhythm just yet, we most DEFINITELY did not want this day to go by without making a fuss over a very special lady in our lives…pretty much the most important one.

Without her, really, none of this would be here. None of us, none of our families. She, our matriarch, our head of household, our guiding star, is our Mama, and today is her BIRTHDAY!!!!!

So here’s to you, Mommy – happy, happy birthday! We hope you know how much you are loved, looked up to, and admired. You hold a special place in each of our hearts, lessons and love unique to each one of us. You’ve set incredible examples for us, helped whenever needed (even when we didn’t know we needed it) and loving us regardless and no matter what.

Mom

Mom

We love you and hope you have the most beautiful day, filled with so much love, light and laughter your heart stays full forever.

Love,

Your baby girls
~ Weather Vane Sisterhood

 

Advertisements

Dear Mama

The Sisterhood got together and decided to each write a small note to *our* mom for this Friday’s post. We all know that when it comes to our mom, we’ve got it made. So, Mom – here’s to you! ❤

The ladies, back in the day

L to R: Toni, Mama, Andreah, Jacqui, Julia

~~~

Mom,

After my labour with Sophie, I apologized for my own 40-hour birthing marathon I made you go through. Whenever the babies are sick, I’m so grateful for all the nights you sat up with me, your own sickly baby. When I say words that I’ve heard you say a hundred times to guide my babies, I recall where they’ve come from and am so blessed to have you helping to grow my own loves. Becoming a mother has given me so much more appreciation for what you did when we were young and what you still do, every day, for your grown daughters. You were and are incredible. Thank you for that.

This Mother’s Day I hope you take time for you, time to reflect on the journey you have traveled, and then give yourself the praise you deserve. I’ve discovered on this tumultuous journey of mine that mothers have to give a million times…and then one more. That even when the day is over, the tasks still go on, the care still remains, the love and comfort still continues. And I know that every day you worry over us, your girls, and our men and our babies and our futures and our lives, that you carry us still in your heart. I’m so grateful for that, but please, in your moments of need, remember how strong you are and how you have four very impressive progress reports of your parenting walking around, like (semi-)decent citizens, who are finding their way because you raised them to do so.

I love you, Mom. More than I can express, more than words can illuminate. Thank you for all you are and do. Thank you.

Love, Julia

~~~

Mama,

My guiding light, my northern star, my constant unconditional source of love – mama.

I’m not sure there are words for how much you have done and do for me, for us, for everyone that is lucky to be loved by you. Your benchmark is a lofty goal and I am not sure I will ever measure up.

Thank you for never giving up on me – even when I broke your heart and made it impossible to love me. That kind of love has been instilled in each of your girls and I see it in our lives – you taught us to love immensely and without condition and to forgive, always.

Thank you for letting me grow in my own time and never rushing the process. For knowing when to fight for me and when to let me duke it out. And when I got my ass handed to me, thank you for always being there to kiss my wounds better and wipe the tears.

You’re the mama I aspire to be for my step-babies – the one that friends and boys are warned about, the one they can count on to always be on their side and the one to give them the space and time to become their own people.

I am so thankful we’ve made it to the other side of this relationship and am lucky to count you as one of my best girl friends. I still have a lot of growing to do and will always need you in my corner. You’re our warrior and my mama bear.

Most importantly, thank you for deciding there should be four. You literally created three of my best friends and that is pretty amazing.

Mama, I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living, my mama you’ll be.

Love, Toni

~~~

Dear Mom,

For the times you drove to get me because you said to call you any time and you would be there.

For the times you sat up with me after a sezuire, and took on my battles like they were your own.

For the times you sacrificed the last fry for me …Thank you.

For the times you held me in your arms, and wiped away the tears.

For the heartbreaks and stomachaches that you soothed and healed.

For the never-ending unconditional love … Thank you

For the advice, and the words of wisdom – for making me remember who I am – Thank you.

Two words are not enough but they are all I have. You have done too much, you do too much and still you still strive and push for more. You inspire me, I am in awe of you.

Thank you for being the best role model a girl, young lady and woman could have – because of you I know that sometimes you have to fight through a heartbreak in order to find your Prince Charming. That education is a constant in order to achieve your dreams.

You are my mother, my best friend, my role model, my confidante.  You are my hero.

I love you Momma, and hope you know that I appreciate  you every day of every year, forever and always.

~ Jacqueline

~~~

Mommy, thank you. I literally cannot say those words to you enough. You are not only my mom, but one of my best friends. We have been through so much together, and have fought so hard for the relationship we have, and I am blessed to have had you right beside me fighting for me the same way I was fighting for you. I am also so incredibly proud of you. You have come so far, not just in your education, but from every pain and heartache from the past. I am so happy to see you smile and live such an amazing and happy life. You make it easy to come visit, and hard to leave. You have worked so hard so we could have so much. You have made me a better person, and gotten me to calm down so that I can have actual relationships with my sisters. You have brought us together, even when we were mad beyond belief and gotten me to work through my problems, even when I didn’t want to face them. You have given me more strength than you know, and I love you so much in so many complex ways it is almost impossible to describe.

You have been my rock, and my guiding star. You have helped me in whatever way I needed, and have given me and us so much of yourself. You have worked impossible miracles, and come up with solutions so simple that leaves me in awe, wondering why I didn’t come up with that.

Thank you for taking my anger, and loving me even when I wasn’t very lovable. Thank you for guiding me to my future, even if I was kicking and screaming the entire time.

Thank you for knowing that something was wrong, even when I didn’t want to admit it. I know I got angry at you that day you suggested I see and talk to someone, and I know I caused you pain when Jacqueline talked to you about that stupid day, when I almost made the dumbest decision of my life.

Thank you, Mommy, for the smallest things, to the biggest. Thank you for being there, and thank you for always being there; I wouldn’t know what to do without you.

I love you.

~ Andreah

~~~

Motherhood: I love this choice

When my sisters and I sat down and decided to honor motherhood this week, I have to admit I experienced a fair amount of anxiety about my post.

I didn’t know if I should write about what motherhood means to me because of the amazing examples in my life, if I should write about the part of me that as a woman, I’m not quite sure I have what it takes to be a mother, or if I should draw from my experience as a step-mama.

I decided to write from my heart.

Motherhood to me is a choice. It’s not a must-have right of passage because society deems it to be the way it is supposed to be, it is a choice. It is the conscious and sub-conscious choosing, every day from the day you decide to create life, until your last breath, to often put another’s needs, wants and desires before your own. It is a choice I wish more women would be more conscious of making. It is a choice I wish some women would realize they are allowed to choose not to make without fear or judgement – at least they should be. I love this choice.

Sometimes the children you choose to mother are not yours by birth-right, but are brought into your life because little did you know just how much you needed them. And sometimes you get to be the person they need. That’s the choice I made. It’s not to say that I won’t one day have a baby of my own, but for now, helping to raise Michael’s children is the right choice for me. Hearing M introduce me to her new host-family via Skype as her “mere”, the “I love you” I get unprompted from J when we’re dropping him off after our weekend together, lets me know that while I am not a necessity in their lives, I am wanted, loved and appreciated by them. I love this choice.

M, myself and J ♥

M, myself and J ♥

Sometimes the mothering we choose to do is for our siblings or our sibling’s children. These past few months I have caught myself on a few occasions mothering my big sister – standing up for her when she couldn’t do it herself, sending her for naps and time outs when I could see on her face she so desperately needed one, making sure she said “no” to people when she could not handle another responsibility being put on her and sometimes even refusing to let her handle the tough stuff on any given day. I love this choice.

Sometimes the only comfort good enough in the world is that of our own maternal mama. To this day, telling my mother about something that is hurting me, something I’m facing that is hard or even telling her I got a speeding ticket, can be the biggest release of emotion of all – even a week later when the wounds are not as fresh. There is something about the way my mom comforts me that gives my must-always-have-your-shit-together-self the permission I need to let go and let it all out. Sometimes I even choose not to be fully open about my heartaches to anyone but my mama. I love this choice.

Sometimes the mother we choose is our sisters. Recently, I received some news that personally reminded me of my own heartache I had been facing. Thankfully, my sisters were not far away. In minutes I found myself on Julia’s couch with a tissue box in my lap, earnestly being reminded that what I was feeling was not, as I had repeatedly referred to it, “stupid”, but completely relevant, real and appropriate. A tea, some more tears and a piece of Julia-baked cake later and my heart was reminded why God had chosen these beautiful women as my siblings and why life chose them as my best friends. I love this choice.

I love this choice!

I love this choice!

To all of the mamas out there: I choose to admire you, honor you (not just on the second Sunday of May), and be in awe of you. Your courage, strength, grace and wisdom are breathtaking. I love this choice.

~ Toni

Guest post – The importance of moms

Ben, Julia’s husband and knight-in-shining armor, is our guest blogger today! He’s kicking off our Mother’s Day Week by writing about the mothers in his life. Watch for more posts about motherhood all next week in honour of mothers and their day, Sunday May 11, 2014. 

~~~

Mom: What day is it?

Me: Second Sunday in May.

This is a conversation I had frequently with my Mom. It usually followed my asking her for something. Can I go out to my friend’s house? Can you proofread my essay? Can I borrow the van (there’s no way I drove it as much as you did, right?)?

It was her unique way of saying “Yes, but make sure you appreciate this.”

This is to say nothing of the things that she provided even when I didn’t directly ask for them: a home, food (I ate A LOT), clothes. Things that are easy to overlook, until you have to provide them yourself.

Moms give.

Moms teach.

She had other, less subtle ways of reminding me of the importance of Mom (though I don’t recall her referring to herself in the 3rd person). I remember her driving to and from Confirmation classes, during which she would ask us to recite the Commandments and Articles of Our Faith, our memory homework. She would call out one of them and “volunteer” one of us to recite it. Of course her favourite has always been the fourth commandment (I’m sure she asked for this one more than any of the others). She could still ask for it today, and I would be able to tell her (here it is as I remember it):

Source: The Ten Commandments

Source: The Ten Commandments

“Hounor thy father and thy mother that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

What does this mean?

We shall fear and love God that we do not despise nor vex our parents or superiors. But rather love, honour, obey, serve and esteem them.”

Moms drive.

Moms teach (because we have so much to learn).

I have no difficulty saying that my Mom has been one of the greatest influences in my life. But as I grew and experienced more, other Moms came into the picture of my life, with a similarly profound impact.

When I was dating my future wife (you may know her as Julia), I was warned by a mutual friend, not to upset the “Mama Bear.” She was fiercely protective of her girls. I’m happy to say, I made it through the courtship without being mauled. Our relationship started off slowly, tentatively, but it grew until she became my Other Mom. It is a title she has earned. I refuse to call her mother-in-law, or any of the other less savoury names.

Moms protect.

Moms accept.

One of the great parts of becoming a parent was watching Julia grow into a Mom. Even before we were married, she was a mother and champion to those around her. Throughout her journey with and battle against PPD, she has become a champion of the cause and made a number of new friends. She used her own experience to empathize with and inspire others.

When we were deciding how to handle Lillian’s unique situation, with the doctor appointments in Toronto, weekly speech therapy and complicated hearing equipment, Julia stepped up – instinctively – and became the stay-at-home mom. In the end, it was a decision that we made considering all the facts, although her initial reaction speaks to the Mom she is.

Moms help.

Moms nurture.

Moms work relentlessly work at a job that no one in their right mind would willingly accept.

 

What day is it? The second Sunday in May. Now what are you going to do about it?

~ Ben

 

If you’d like to write a guest post and join in the Weather Vane Sisterhood fun, email us at weathervanesisterhood at gmail dot com. We’d love to have you!