As an adoptive mom, Mother’s Day has an underlying layer of meaning. It brings to mind the women who carry a baby for nine months, suffering morning sickness, feeling that first little flutter of movement, gaining an amazing amount of weight while losing an amazing amount of energy, going into the pain of labor, and giving birth to a precious little miracle…. and then, for one reason or another, needs to sacrifice the title of “mom” and give it to another.
Among the crowd of people in my home on Sunday, the hugs and homemade gifts, I received two phone calls from two extraordinary women. My friend, J, is in her 50’s, a widow. Over thirty years ago, she became pregnant and decided to place her baby girl with an adoptive family. Her story is similar to so many during that time, overshadowed with shame and punctuated with callousness from those around her. She has worked through that grief and although she has not been able to have contact with the daughter she loves, and has no other children, she has peace. It has been a blessing to my children to have her in their lives as part of our put-together family of “aunts and uncles.” The little ones in my family, all adopted, are as priceless to her as she is to them. We can wish each other “Happy Mother’s Day” with great understanding. What an honor!
My other special phone call has come every year. Mama Jenna, who gave birth to two of my children, called to wish me a Happy Mother’s Day and tell me how much she appreciates me. I can think of no more gracious act. On this day, her name on the caller ID alone brings me to tears. Oh, how she loves her babies! I’m am so deeply humbled by this selfless gift, that I strive to parent these two little ones as not only “my children” but hers as well. It is a privilege that I take seriously and I will do well if I live up to half of what she imagines me to be.
To these two precious sisters of mine- I am honored to know you, I am moved by your pain, I am humbled by your love and I wish you a Happy Mother’s Day.