To the mother who paces the house at 2 a.m. with a screaming infant. Who spends hours upon hours Googling diaper rashes, thrush, and the best brand of bottles for colic. Who wipes tears of joy from her cheeks as she watches her napping newborn. Who prays for three consecutive hours of sleep.
To the mother who has a highlighted calendar more colorful than a package of Skittles. Who makes multiple trips to town every day for ballet shoes, ball gloves, and poster board. Who manages to get 2,3,4,5 kids in 2,3,4,5 different places at once. Who fixes the lunches, signs the papers, sends in the money. Who drives the car, van, or SUV that serves as a locker room. Who sprays Shout on grass stains, unloads and reloads the dishwasher and vacuums the dust bunnies. Who feels guilty for feeding her kids a supper of corn dogs at 9 p.m. Who can’t sleep because she’s thinking of everything that needs to be done tomorrow.
To the mother who tears up behind the camera while snapping her child’s graduation photo. Who prays over college applications and life decisions. Who helps pack totes for the dorm room and reluctantly loads them into the back of the car. Who tosses and turns because her baby is no longer sleeping upstairs.
To the mother who watches her beautiful daughter walk down the aisle in a white gown. Who watches her handsome son wait at the altar in a tux. Who doesn’t know if she can let go. Who spends sleepless nights looking at wedding photos and shedding both tears of joy and sadness.
To the mother who holds the third generation for the first time. Who discovers the overwhelming happiness of becoming a grandmother. Who sees her own child in that baby’s eyes. Who gives advice that the new parents may not want to hear. Who gladly volunteers to come over and stay up with that precious new bundle while her own child rests.
To the mother who takes her elderly mother shopping for new shoes with arch supports. Who places her hand under her mother’s frail arm and helps her climb stairs. Who stares at her ailing mother in hopes to ingrain every line and wrinkle in her memory. Who can’t sleep because she worries about the day she’ll have to say goodbye.
To the mother who visits her own mother’s grave. Who places spring flowers at the headstone of her mentor. Who kneels over her mother’s marker and sobs. Who longs for her mother’s voice, her touch, her advice, her love. Who paces the house until dawn because she still needs her mother so.
To the mother who visits her child’s grave. Who prays over a stone and asks why. Who remains faithful and strong through the biggest storm of life. Who stares at the dark ceiling and imagines the day when they will be reunited on the other side of Heaven.
To the mother who knows the grief of miscarriage. Who often pulls out the positive pregnancy test or ultrasound photo. Who may not have mothered that child on this earth, but loves that seed as if she had. Who longs for a baby to keep her awake at night instead of tears.
To the mother who gives selflessly. Who prays fervently. Who loves unconditionally. Who doesn’t sleep for a million different reasons.
Happy Mother’s Day.