As I am…
I knew I needed to write something today. Since last night ideas toiled in my mind about what I could say. Even now I am unsure as to how this will come out, but I do know it is necessary. A Mother’s Day reflection, upon my own day of celebration, and the eve of my daughters 3rd birthday, I can’t help but feel introspective. It still amazes me that I have child, it is more amazing that she is literally a carbon copy of my younger self. She is everything I could have ever dreamed of asking for, and more. Cliché, but true. She elicits and renews strength, and patience, and peace and love within me I never knew I could have. She is joy.
Daily I strive to be the best version of myself for her. Daily I push myself to be, and do more, for her. I hold my tongue, I smile, and I sacrifice for her. Freely, I give and give of myself to life all unbeknownst to her. I could never bring myself to shame, blame, or complain to her about the jewels, and cobble stones that our journey has been met with. I am a mother because of her. I am who I am today because of her. Through her birth, I bore growth, and evolution. On this Mother’s Day, I honor my daughter.
A Mother’s Mother…
We are all here by no uncertain circumstance. From someone’s womb and God’s inception, I am. Often many debate about who, and what embody a Mother. A caring woman? A loving woman? A strong, sacrificial woman? Maybe it’s some proxy, an Aunt that raised you? An older sister, or Grandmother? Maybe, you’ve been your own mother.
In my 27 years, I have been blessed with a tribe of women who have been friends, and mentors, bridging the gaps of my own, self-mothering. My earliest recollection brings me to Wharton, NJ. From grade school on through high school, my friends at the time saw me through extreme emotional highs and lows at school. I found solace in my tribe of young girls. Passing coded notes in class, mock initiations on the playground, and plotting an R&B group take over. We grew, and pushed each other through college life, drunk nights, and boyfriend, after boyfriend after hook-up.
In the midst of my friends carrying, and caring for me, there was also my church’s girl’s group leader. She was always a listening ear, and wise words. She helped me cope, and deal with teenage growing pains, and those thereafter. She was always a sure avenue of insight, no matter what I brought to her. Even now I still call her. My mentor has become a friend, and we can relate, and exchange as women, and mothers.
When I was kicked out for the umpteenth time, it was my Aunt who went apartment hunting with me. It was my aunt who scouted perfect “throw away” furniture for me to refurbish, to personalize my first apartment. It has been my aunt who for a time, personified what a mother was, and should been to me. Like my mentor, I went to her with my woes, and she listened. She would speak to me, and I would listen, taking in the care, and graciousness with which she did everything. She taught me a deeper understanding to the side of life we as children to others, often miss. She has been a great example in forgiveness, and patience for those we love, and those we don’t. She represents a silent strength, and sacrifice, of an untold story of many mothers.
When I decided I was going to become a mother, a friend of mine shared the same news. We have prayed, laughed, and cried together through pregnancy, and thereafter. She has inspired me, challenged and pushed me. In my unrelenting joy in solitude, she continues to call me daily, forgoing her busy schedule to make time to think of me, and check in. She is the type of friend people like me do not deserve. She is the type of friend everyone wants to have. She is the friend I have always needed. A mother in her own right, she is an example not only to me but her siblings as well.
Since my birth there has always been one, and eventually two. My aces, my cousins. Their parents practically raised me. We have seen each other through many emotional traumas through the years. In our younger days, most were probably self-inflicted, but nevertheless we have always been each other’s pillar. When I had the airport incident in GA, my cousin was calling all my Line sisters, and Soros to get bail money up. When my daughter and I were homeless, they both took us in. I cannot express without coming to tears, the impact these two have had on my life. From the great, good, bad, and ugly they will forever be my number ones.
The awning over all these women, over my entire life would be my grandmother. The woman who raised me. The woman who is still tirelessly giving of herself for my, and now my daughters, benefit. The woman whom I know is tired but continues to sacrifice daily for me. The woman who wiped my ass till I was 6, the woman who gave me my gift of writing, my passion for reading, my life line. I would could have never made it this far without you. I could have never made it this far without your prayers. It is the ancestral covering of my grandmother’s fervent prayers that has called God’s grace and mercy to anoint and guide my footsteps.
Experiences, lessons learned, and inspiration have all molded significant parts of who I am. I would be nothing without the contribution of each and every one of you, and more in my life.
Nanny, Ashleigh, Samantha, Aunt Cheron, Erricka, Tressy, Dwanee, Leslye, Denise, Sara, Molly, Lindsey, Quisha, Yulon, Christine, Annabell, Veronica, and Lyric. I thank you.