People, this is the kind of influence I grow up with: It's Mother's Day, my mom wakes up to take Chelsea to work at 7 am, and then brings me breakfast in bed when she gets home.
Ridiculous. I tell ya, if I am half the mother that my mother is, my kids will be blessed beyond belief.
We may be different in so many ways, we may have extremely different viewpoints on many subjects, but I can honestly say that I would not be the woman I am today without her influence and love. Heck, I probably wouldn't be alive if it weren't for her. Her dedication to getting me the best care possible, no matter what it cost her, has without a doubt led me to some of the best medical care I could ask for.
I got my fighting spirit from her. She doesn't know how strong she is, but I've known all along. She has been on her own for more than 16 years, a completely single parent for almost 14. In the meantime, she's dealt with teenage rebellion, a full-time job, my neverending health issues, her health issues, Chelsea's mental issues and constant creation of drama, Chelsea getting pregnant and basically forcing my mother to raising a 4th child just as she thought she was done with that, and so much else. She's done all of this without the reliance on God that has become so vital to my perseverance, and yet it still hasn't broken her. I think this is why I pray for her salvation more than just about anyone else's that I know; I don't want this world to break her without her being aware that she has God to fall back on. I'm seeing glimmers of her coming to that understanding...I can only pray that this really is the seeds being planted, so that she can come to the full life that I have found.
She pushes me when I don't want to be pushed, because she knows I can do more than I believe that I can.
She cheers for me when I feel like there's nothing to cheer about.
She has instilled in me a passion for music. For as long as I can remember, there has been music playing in this house. The Beatles. Rock'n'roll from the 80's. Jazz. Classical. She taught me to appreciate that there is beauty in all music, even if it's not a style I'm fond of. She taught me to sing even when I don't sound the greatest, that as cliché as this sounds, it's better to let an out-of-tune song out if it's what makes you happy than to hold it in for fear of being laughed at. And she's still one of the best singers I've ever heard.
She's shown me what it looks like to be a mother to the motherless, or even just the ones like Ryann whose parents are far away, to believe in the ones the world has given up on, to find good in people even when it's the last thing your mind wants to do.
She loves me with everything she is and has, I've never doubted that for a second. Even as I've grown older and found my faith on my own, as our differences become more prominent, as I make less and less sense to her, I know that she loves me. She loves me, even though she doesn't understand me.
I love her. I don't even know if she realizes how much or how deeply, how I would give anything in the world to take her pain away, how much she is my hero. I don't know if she realizes that the love God grows in me for her every day is so much a part of the reason that I refuse to give up on my life, on her life, on our relationship.
I pray that she lives long enough for me to have the chance to take care of her the way she's taken care of me and given me the love of two parents for so long.