This Sunday is Mother’s Day. It’s supposed to be all about “us”—our day to be thanked for the “love we’ve given, time we’ve devoted, and sacrifices we’ve made”. We’ll get cards, flowers, and maybe breakfast in bed or other thoughtful expressions of gratitude.

My husband asked me the other day what I wanted. Being just one month and (almost) three, the kids are obviously too little to do something on their own.

When he asked me, it really made me start thinking. I began picturing the times when they will make little cards and gifts on their own or maybe call me from their own home, way down the road, to thank me.

To be perfectly honest, the more I thought about it, the idea of “being thanked” feels really strange. I appreciate it, just like every other mom out there. Don’t get me wrong. I’ll enjoy being treated to lunch on Sunday or whatever he comes up with. 

The thing is though . . . it just feels like it should be me thanking them. They, being my children, are the greatest gifts I could have received or will ever receive.

So, this Mother’s Day, all I really want is to tell my children from my heart of hearts, thank you.

Thank you for the day you announced your presence.

I’ll always remember the moment I saw those two lines. The sudden rush of emotions that swelled up in my heart, the instant love I had for you, and the bond that formed immediately. It was in that very moment I became a mother. Thank you to my two angels who left before I could meet them. I had instant love and dreams for you—the day I miscarried you was painful and something no mother forgets. You are and always will be precious to me.

Thank you for the day you were born.

For those nine months of nausea, fatigue, and stretch marks. For the growing number on the scale and for clothes that stopped fitting. For the extra hormones, the hair loss, and the skin breakouts. Because it all led up to the opportunity and gift of bringing life into this world. Thank you for letting me feel you grow and move inside me. For showing me, in a physical aspect through labor, that the worst kind of pain can bring the greatest amount of joy. The day I looked into your eyes and heard you cry for the first time will always be counted as one of my best memories.

Thank you for being alive.

For needing me, from the 2 a.m. newborn cries and the toddler tantrums to the future teenage trials. For the daily messes, dirty laundry, and sleepless nights. For the crumbs. For the smears on the window. For making the living room look like it needs vacuumed again, five minutes after I just did. Thank you for bringing me piles of books to read, even when I’m tired. Thank you for snuggling in my arms when you are sick. Thank you for each and every little sign that you exist.

Thank you for teaching me some of life’s greatest lessons.

For making me grow as a human. For showing me what it means to be selfless, to give of myself, and to really love. Thank you for making me a stronger person, while giving me a softer heart. For restoring my faith and helping me learn to look outside of myself for the answers.

Thank you for opening my eyes.

Because of you, I get to see the world differently. Waking up on Christmas morning, watching snowflakes fall, baking cookies, running through sprinklers, blowing bubbles, and watching fireworks light up the summer sky. Because of you, these simple moments are suddenly more precious and more beautiful than ever before.

Thank you for the chance to watch you grow, learn, and develop into the unique person you are and will become.

For being able to be by your side during some of your biggest moments and watch you pursue your dreams. I hope that one day I will get to watch you walk down the aisle, graduate from college, or hold your own child in your arms. But even if I don’t get to, thank you for giving me the chance to be the one who brought you into this world, so that you could experience all the gifts that life will bring your way. It’s, quite simply, the greatest honor a person could ever have.

So, thank you.

Thank you for making me a better person.

Thank you for giving me a greater, bigger, and better purpose in life.

Thank you for making me a mother.

Originally published on the author’s blog 

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Elizabeth Wiley

Elizabeth is a wife, homeschooling mom of two (soon to be three!) little ones, and an aspiring writer. She is a lover of beautiful words, strong coffee, & Lake Michigan. Elizabeth enjoys blogging at www.elizabethannewiley.com about all things related to motherhood, finding faith amidst the trials, and living life with passion and purpose!