To All the Moms Who Mothered Us Along the Way

Biologically speaking, we all have moms. We have their blood and we may have their eyes, and we are a part of them just as much as they are a part of us. But we don't always find moms through shared genes. We find them in the women we come across who love us like daughters, whether we belong to them or not. And that kind of generosity goes a long way when you're young. It goes a long way when you're grown, too. It's the kind of love you earn, and we're lucky we got it. Really, we're lucky we found women who gave it.

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These are the women who mothered us and mentored us, loved us and learned from us. They're the teachers who let us spend hours with them after school, giving our thoughts and ideas credit, even when we were young.

They were the moms of friends who accepted us into their homes and made space for us on the couch during NCIS marathons. They made us food, took us on vacation, and gave us the same time and advice they gave their own children. 

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We found them in homes that weren't our own, or at church or at temple or around in the community. They waited for us in classrooms and in offices and mothered us when we needed it.

They listened to us and loved us. Those are generous things to do, and they didn't have to.  

That's really it, right? They didn't have to keep our favorite snacks stocked in their cabinets, and they definitely didn't have to pay enough attention to figure out what our favorites were. But they did. It was a choice they made that favored us.

Some of us are lucky enough to love our biological mothers, too. Some people aren't. Some don't have biological mothers anymore anyway, and some never knew them in the first place. But it doesn't really matter, does it? There are mothers and there are moms and sometimes those lines cross and sometimes they don't. 

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Maybe it's easier to love women who came into your life when you were ready instead of ones that have always been around. Maybe it's harder. Either way, we did love them. We need to thank them for letting us, and then thank them again for loving us back.

So, to all our moms, biological and not: You raised us, sometimes briefly, sometimes not. You taught us to be us, and you had a hand in who we became. You proved to us that family is a word we get to define ourselves, and you showed us how to grow up to be as generous as you. 

You were selfless, and for that we thank you.

 

Image via iStock.com/Xesai

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