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What I am: She helped me to be...

Today is a very special day.  Today is my Mama's Birthday.  This lady is a lady who tried to tell me when I was younger "I've been around the block a time or two..." to which I would just shake my head and think "Whatever!" and I now I know --- my Mama was always right.  Her infinite wisdom, never-ending hugs, gentle firmness, and constant encouragement shaped me into who I am today and I am so proud, blessed, and honored to celebrate her today.

My Mama with my Daddy and my Grandma on my Adoption Day!
Most everyone thinks their Mom is special, but I have truly grown to know that my mom is extremely special.  From being the selfless woman who did everything she could do to become a mom, including welcoming a tiny little baby from Korea into her heart and her home over 30 years ago, to now becoming the loving, nurturing grandma to my two Minis; she really is remarkable. 

In another life, my Mom was a nurse.  A natural caregiver at heart, she started out her journey from high school as someone who put others' needs before her own.  When she finally received the call that she was to become a mother, she quit her job and poured her entire existance into preparing her home for the journey of Motherhood.  She put herself last---always---to raise and care and provide for her family.  There was never a time she wasn't at home, never a parent-teacher conference she missed, never a concert that wasn't attended.  She was always there.

Instead of investing time in friendships, she invested time in her kids.  Instead of eating three square meals herself, she spent her time preparing a small buffet line of food for her ridiculously picky-eaters (I totally feel her pain now!).  Instead of going to bed early, she colored in coloring books until she nearly passed out on the floor or watched Beauty and the Beast for the 100,000th time.  My mom was beyond good to us.

Now, I have the pleasure to share my little Minis and the aches and pains of Motherhood with her.  She put this incredible memory in my mind of how a mom is and I have no idea how to fill her shoes!  I am not nearly as selfless as she is!  For. Real!  And she is just as present with my Lexi and HJ as she was with my sister and me.

While my mom turns 71 today, she still carts the kids off to the zoo, the botanical gardens, for walks in the park, and chases them around the house.  She has more energy than I do!  Yes, she still does her short-order cook duties for my picky eater (Lexi, not HJ---he eats anything!) and she invests time with all of us now.

She does so many fun activities and shares incredible experiences with the kids---they are getting the same enriching childhood that she gave me.

It's going to be many years before I become a "Gaga" myself, but she's still raising the bar for Grandmas around the globe!  How I'll ever measure up to her, I'll never know.  But what I do know is that I love her more than words could ever express.  She is my constant variable, my strength, my help, my rock, my inspiration.  I'm not sure how I got so lucky to be blessed with this incredible lady, but I am definitely thanking God for her and celebrating her today.

Happy Happy Birthday, Mama.  I hope that you have the day you so deserve.  I'm so proud of you and I love you so very very much.


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