Last year I wrote my Mom an open letter for Mothers Day which I posted on my old blog. Now that I am 9 months pregnant, thoughts of my mother and all she did for me have been very present in my mind. I am starting on a journey that she went on all those years ago when she had me, and I am beginning to see the magnitude of her love. I have always known how much she loves and cares for me, but something about pregnancy and making your own child clears the fog and lets you see a little more clearly. Like moving over to HD. I am re-posting the open letter for the second time now, because it will never get old. I will never stop loving and appreciating her for all she did for me. She is the greatest mother, and I hope to emulate her in the coming years with my own little one.

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Dear Mom.

On this Mothers day, I would like you to reflect on your accomplishments and achievements in the form of your children. Specifically me, your fifth child, what it means to have been raised by you.

You made me and kept me safe till birth, cutting out anything from your own diet that could affect me or hurt me in any way. You ate food not for yourself but to nourish the baby growing inside you, and then the time came when you cut the umbilical cord, to let me learn to breathe and eat and nourish myself.

You gave me your breast, still cutting out harmful foods that could carry across to me, and made sure I was always satisfied and full – no matter how inconvenient it may have been for you. At the time breastfeeding was frowned upon, but you didn’t care. You fed me and I grew into the strong, 6ft tall viking maiden I am because of it.

When the time was right and I moved from infancy to childhood, you knew to cut the bond of suckling and let me learn to chew. You guided me through the process from mothers milk to solids, and you gently eased me into a new world of nutrition that would sustain me to my adult years.

You carried me when I was little, cradling me from the dangers of the world and keeping me from bumping my head. You pushed me in a pram and carried me in a carrycot. But then the time came when you cut me loose, let go of my hands so that I could learn to walk, run and ride a bike on my own.

You fended for me, bought me clothes and shoes and toys. You saved your money, not for your own pleasures and desires, but to buy me those little black ballet shoes I so desperately wanted. You used your money to put a roof over my head, to buy soap to keep me clean. You took the time to moisturise my sensitive skin, took me to the doctor, and paid for the everyday things that were needed while I was growing up.

You gave me a home in more ways than mere food and shelter. You housed me spiritually and physically, allowing me to make my own mark inside your dwelling. You offered me this home for all the years I needed it as a child, and then knew when the time was right to encourage me to move out to the take on the world.

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The time came when you cut me off financially and I needed to learn to fend for myself and make my own way in the world. You encouraged me to move away from home to find my own place, and build my own future because you knew that even though I could be with you for the rest of your days, you would not be able to be here with me for the rest of mine. You wanted me to be prepared for that time, to have developed other relationships apart from you, and to grow as an individual rather than stunt me with misplaced affection and fear. It must have been very hard to let go of your children, to face the empty nest, but you did it with grace and strength.

Even though I know I always have a spiritual home with you, I felt strong enough and guided to go and find my own way, my own home, to build my own life, my own family.

You raised me to be strong and independent and you raised me to grow into a self-sufficient adult. The word ‘raised’ is past tense, but it is imprinted in me for all the rest of my days – ever present. You were a wonderful mother, doing your best and thinking of me always, and I will live those effects of your careful mothering forever.

You nurtured and nourished me when it was the time to do so. You grew me and taught me. You did what you felt was right to imprint your views and beliefs and ways on me. What has stuck has stuck and what hasn’t hasn’t. But despite the things that haven’t stuck, (like the fact that I still can’t spell very well, and don’t ever make my bed with enthusiasm) I have been given so many great things by you and Dad that I am proud of and so should you be:

A good brain, a tall strong frame, a lovely hair colour. Appreciation of all life, love of cats and of classical music, of the piano, love of English culture and literature. A relationship with the best grandmother a girl could ever have hoped for. The love of all animals, love of words, stories, ballet, love of children, love of humour. Love of bagpipes (sorry Dad). Wonderful individual relationships with my siblings. Love of my family. Love of learning. Faith. Ability to cope through hard times. Belief in being and doing good, and not behaving like an animal. Care of others. Consideration of others feelings and appreciation for others differences. Ability to change my position when proven wrong. Ability to face my own faults. Good manners. Not swearing (well, not the worst words, at least). Sharing and being helpful. Being a lady. Treating strangers kindly. Being brave. Belief in God. Presenting my best self to the world. Love of the William books! Enjoying learning new things. Nesting. Home making and future making. Having the highest love and respect for my husband (and the ability to find one who deserves that respect.) The ability to come back from a fight and to forgive and to say sorry. The inner drive to do everything to the best of my own ability. The ability to see that kindness is more important than being right. The need to work and create and build constantly. Ability to change, to move forward, to adapt. Ability to eat anything I’m given, at least once! You have raised me, giving me your best, and I am thankful for it. You have been the biggest part of making me the adult I have become.

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The time came to cut me off. You no longer needed to raise me, grow me, fend for me, house me – but I will never forget all you have done. You are a strong and wonderful mother for always knowing when it was time to cut the bonds so that I could walk up tall and free in my own life, carrying your light on to the next generation. You gave me my adventurous spirit, and gave me everything I needed for my own future. I hope that you now see what a wonderful job you did.

Thank you for teaching me to cope when you had to cut me loose, training me my whole life to give me the strength and guts to go forward into the unknown. When you had to let go of my hands, let go of my nutrition, let go of my learning, let go of my finances. Of my beliefs. Of my ambitions. Of my future. Thank you for always pushing me forward, the little bird in the nest, who may otherwise never have learned to fly.

Thank you for being the best Mom.

I love you and only hope to be able to imitate you one day with my own little bird.

Happy Mother’s Day.

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IMAGES: 1. ‘See the Beauty’ by Jan Lang / 2. Google Images/ 3. Own