Mom Jean Confessions: I Am My Mother

This Mother’s Day is my “official” second time celebrating the holiday. I say “official”, only because Grant convinced me it was totally legit to celebrate when I was pregnant with Garrett – so technically we’re on year three, but who’s counting 😉

Regardless, I truly never knew how special it would feel to be a mom on Mother’s Day. I keep joking that it’s like having a second birthday – but seriously, it kinda is. Which got me thinking, and feeling uber guilty, about all the Mother’s Days I spent with my own mom and whether I truly ever gave “her day” the attention it deserved. Because from where I stand now, having been through pregnancy, childbirth and the first year of being a new mom – I’m sorry, but that woman needs her own Macy’s day parade. If you don’t believe me, let me enlighten you by playing a new game I like to call – “I am my mother”. Here goes…

I am my mother. I look at my son, and all I see is love. No terrible two’s tantrum, rebellious teenage angst, or miles that will inevitably separate us someday – will ever take that away. I get it now, Mom.

I am my mother. I found my soulmate – a man who loves and respects me the way my father loved and respected my mom. Because I learned by her example, never to sacrifice passion and a true connection for just a reason to settle down.

I am my mother. Family is and always will be number one, and I will never apologize for prioritizing them over a career. This is not to be mistaken for not caring about striving to better yourself, it just simply means nothing comes before family. I’m proud that my mother instilled this type of value in me and strive everyday to live up to it.

I am my mother. No matter how many curveballs life throws my way, I’ve never let go of my dreams and understand the importance of cultivating your creativity – even if it means staying up late when everyone else is asleep (ahem). Can’t tell you how many times I saw my mom up late working on new pieces of clothing or jewelry to sell – sure she wasn’t answering client emails or filling out spreadsheets, but she was the most committed small business owner I know. That my friends, takes guts.

I am my mother. I can be extremely tough on myself and those I love most, almost to a fault. But it was my mom who also taught me that compassion and forgiveness are the most important traits anyone can have, and to this day I don’t know anyone who exemplifies these traits more than my mom.

I am my mother. The minute I became a mom and witness to the most amazing miracle one can experience in life – I devoted every ounce of my being to becoming the kind of mother my son would be proud of to call his own. So Mom, if you’re reading this (and I know you are cuz you’re my biggest fan) – I know it’s only taken me 30-odd years to realize it, but I’m here to tell you the one thing I should have said all those Mother’s Days ago. I’m proud to call you my mom.

Lord knows we have our differences (or as my British dad used to say – we’re like “chalk and cheese”), and trust me – I used to roll my eyes and say “I’m never gonna be me my mother” with the best of ’em. But it wasn’t until now that I realized – saying “I am my mother” is the biggest compliment anyone could ever give me.

I challenge you to play this game and send your own mom a message on why “You are your mother.” I guarantee she’d take that over a silly Mother’s Day gift any day.

Just for fun – I decided to take a trip down memory lane and started looking through old photo albums (remember those? yah I didn’t think so). I came across my favorite photos from a bitter-sweet trip my mom and I took to Europe, literally just weeks after my dad passed 10 years ago. We were both grieving so deeply, and I can’t tell you how badly we both needed that trip. We started off with a layover in Paris, then a week in Italy and Sicily visiting my father’s family, and finished the trip with a few days in Barcelona. As you can imagine – emotions ran high and I tried everything in my power to push my mom away. But like a true devoted mother, she stayed by my side like a rock, unwavering in her love for me. I can only hope to live up to the kind of mom she is, and that I will never stop saying “I am my mother.”

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