A mother’s love. Before I became a mom, I mistakenly assumed I knew how much you loved me. After all, I was always aware of your love whenever I’d discover surprise “love notes” tucked in my lunchbox along with my all-time favorite sandwich with the perfect proportion of honey and PB spread smoothly across the bread, or when I’d feel your embrace as I wet your shoulder with tears triggered by yet another broken heart, or as I vented to you once I’d been tossed into the real world and had to deal with bills, unfair bosses and terrible customer service while you patiently listened.
I knew you loved me when you saw the genius in my scribbles, hugged me just the right amount during those tumultuous teen years, sent care packages in college, sewed buttons back onto my business suits, and gently tucked a flyaway wisp of my blond hair behind my ear on my wedding day. No, I never doubted your love for me. Yet, I couldn’t possibly understand its depths until the day I became a mother myself. I remember holding Madeline for the first time, skin-to-skin, just minutes after she was born and as I felt her own heart beating against my chest, it all sank in – the profundity of it all. A mother’s love. The way you felt when you held me the first time. The bittersweet moment you experienced as you watched my first dance as Dave’s wife. The visceral pain you bore when I was hurt physically or emotionally.
I finally knew just how much love your heart had carved out for me. So, thank you. Thank you for loving me even when I didn’t deserve to be loved. Thanks for sacrificing so much just to be my mom. I can only hope I can make my own kids feel as loved as you made me feel. I love you, Mom and Gaba to my girls. Happy Birthday!
Your Little Girl,