|Clockwise from top left: Mary Helen Jenkins, Carson Burke and Newborn Hayley, Inez Emily Oggel, Edie O'Connor, Hayley 17 Weeks Pregnant (March 2014), & Ynes Oggel|
If you're one of the lucky few, you are blessed with an amazing Mother.
I am so thankful and grateful to be one of those people as I have been blessed more than once.
My Mother has given me so much over these past 35 years. She has taught me the value of perseverance, and that I'm loads smarter than I give myself credit for. She has always listened to my concerns and woes without judgement and offered me gentle guidance. She has encouraged me when I'm ready to give up, and celebrated with me when I eventually succeed. We are amazingly similar in voice and actions, but different in mind and spirit. Our differences teach us about ourselves, and our similarities a hilarious reflection of our neurotic behaviors and dark sense of humor. My Mother is most importantly my Mother, and secondly my treasured friend.
Thank you Mom for:
Teaching me about creativity (sewing, crochet and creative thinking).
Teaching me how to care and cultivate life (plants, gardens and my inner-self).
Teaching me how to feed myself (through cooking, recipes, and self-compassion).
Teaching me to be a lover of reality.
If your luck continues, when you're 16 years old, another Mother comes into your life.
She becomes your friend, your confidant, and your fiercest cheerleader. She sews your madrigal costumes for you in high school and teaches you the proper way to eat a mango. She encourages you to live life to it's fullest and not to be shy with your laughter.
Thank you Ynes for:
Being an example of what it means to live life (traveling abroad, speaking another language, dancing).
Accepting me for who I am (even though I was a very angst filled teenager for many years!).
Teaching me to go after what I want, and to believe in my talents and education.
Loving my father and my family perfectly.
And if you can believe it, when you're 31 years old, one more Mother comes onto the scene.
She welcomes you into her family of boys with wide open arms and the most genuine smile you've ever seen. She is the story-keeper for the life your husband lived before you knew him, filling in the blanks of his childhood and younger years. She is wicked smart, an unstoppable force of energy, and an amazing Mother to you, to your husband and to her family.
Thank you Edie for:
Raising a son that is respectful of women and emotionally aware.
Treating me like a daughter from the first day you met me.
Your unending generosity and constant flow of care, concern and love.
And before I was even on this earth, to the two women that raised my Mother and my Father.
I am so thankful that I knew you both as Grandmothers. You were both so unique, and so very different from one another, except in the way you loved me.
I carry with me the stories you told, the experiences we shared, as well as the smell and feel of you. The rustling of pantyhose against a skirt, the smell of your perfume, the softness of your cheek as you hugged and kissed me, the depth with which you loved me. I can only hope to someday be a grandmother in your likenesses.
The story of Motherhood continues now with me and the little one I carry inside.
It is my hope and aim to give this little one all of what has been given to me through these generations of women. It is because of their love, support and influence that I feel prepared to take on this challenge of being a Mom.
Thank you to all my Mothers.
Happy Mother's Day.