With love and gratitude

I’m lucky.

Although I suppose my good fortune has not so much to do with luck as with grace, when it comes down to it. The point remains: I–we–have the best mothers around. (No offense, rest of the world. It’s true.) Beverly/Bebe (Michael’s mom) and my own dear Mama are truly treasures, and I’m beyond thankful to call them family.

My mother-in-law is kind and caring. From the moment that I met her (before Michael and I were officially dating, which helped with the nervousness on my part but perhaps made her a bit uncertain what the deal was), she made me feel at home and that she was so glad to have me in her (and her son’s!) life. She supports and encourages, never judging me for who I am and what I do (or don’t) do. She laughs with me, gently, when I’m ridiculous, in a way that makes me feel a loved member of the family. Much of Michael’s creative artistic and musical talents come directly from his mother. I’m grateful for the way she loves her sons, fiercely, yet is willing to let them fly where they may. Suzanne, one of my sisters-in-law, and I often say that we so admire Bebe for the way she raised her three sons. The prayer and love she poured into them is obvious. We ought to know: we reap the benefits every day. I’m so grateful to call her my mother-in-law.

My own mother is wise, strong, practical, and self-sacrificing. Selflessness, I suppose, is a character trait that comes with the territory of being a mother. I have nowhere seen this lived out as richly as in my own mother, from the years she spent raising the four of us girls to the way she supports our dad to the years she has spent caring for her own parents and aunt when they need her. She is always a listening ear, not just to me but to my sisters. (Heaven knows we don’t listen to her enough.) Whether it’s tiny details about my day, frustration, or heartbreak, she is there. And while she’s there to sympathize, she also tells us the truth that we need to hear to face life directly and honestly. She is the wisest woman I know. My sisters and I are very, very far from perfect, but I am proud of the independent  women that we have grown up to be, and our mom is responsible for such a great deal of that. I hope that when I grow up, I am as wise, patient, calm, and most of all, self-forgetful as my mother. She’s just the best.

Happy Mother’s Day.

We love you both, dearly.

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