Happy Mother’s Day!
Today is a bittersweet day for me. I am rejoicing over my sweet girls and the beautiful gifts of motherhood, but I am also incredibly aware of the dull ache in my head and my heart as I wrap my mind around my first mother’s day as a foster Mom.
I am acutely aware today, more than most days, that I am NOT Little Miss’ Mom. No, no…that role belongs to someone else. I am acting as her Mom, that is for sure, but I’m not her Mom. Fellow foster Mom’s and adoptive Mom’s, let’s not forget to think of those birth Mama’s out there, who for whatever reason are not currently mothering their children. Sure, in my situation, I can take credit for 8 entire months of mothering this child, and Little Miss’ Mom has not been able to mother her daughter at all. But that does not change the fact that she is her Mom. She will always be her Mom. Let’s not forget that.
So I wanted to write a letter to the Mom of my foster daughter. I wanted to share with her some of the thoughts bouncing around in my head. I realize that this being published on my blog is incredibly personal- both to me and to her, and I have thought long and hard about actually sharing it or not. I have decided to share it for several reasons. First, if there are any birth Mom’s out there struggling today, I want you to read this and be encouraged. Second, if there are any foster Mom’s out there today, also struggling, I want you to read this and know that you are not alone. Let’s continue to mother these children day in and day out, but still remember the ones who chose to give them life.
To the Mom of my Foster Daughter on Mother’s Day,
I hope this day finds you well. I don’t know where you are, or what you are doing today, but I know who you are thinking about. You are thinking about the little love that you birthed just 8 months ago. You are thinking about her because you are her Mom and it’s Mother’s Day. You are thinking about her because she is not with you. Instead, she is with me. There are a few things I want to tell you today, sweet Mama.
I want to tell you that your daughter is so very loved. I have committed to treating her as my own on a daily basis. She is sweet, she is feisty and she is so very loved.
I want you to know that we know that you love your little girl. Life has thrown some hard knocks at you, and you have bent under the pressure. But I know without any doubt that you love her fiercely. I knew that from the very moment I laid eyes on you holding her for the first time.
I want you to know that you are her Mom. It doesn’t matter if you currently have her in your care or not. You are still her Mom, and you deserve to celebrate and be celebrated today. You may not have made all the best decisions in the last few months, but that does not negate one little bit the fact that you are her mother. And that will never change.
I want you to know that motherhood is tough. I struggle with this one, because I know that you haven’t yet had the chance to experience the daily ins and outs of taking care of this child. I know that it wasn’t your choice for it to be this way, so please understand me when I say that it’s ok you haven’t experienced this yet. But it is something that I want you to know. I want you to know about the multiple nightly wake-ups, the nasty blow-out diapers, the constant crying and clinging and needing. I want you to know how it feels when your baby has the stomach flu and how it feels to not know why she is crying…again. I want you to know that motherhood is sometimes so, so hard.
But I also want you to know that motherhood is the greatest joy. I want you know that her laugh and giggle and smile are enough to get you through those tough moments. I want you to know that there is no hard moment that overrides these beautiful and joyous ones. There is no long night that is not worth the cuddles. There is no crying that is not worth the feeling of being the one who provides for all these needs.
She’s so worth it, sweet Mama. She is so worth letting go and getting out of the bonds that are keeping you away from her. She is so worth the hard moments and the sacrifices and the long days. She is so worth your love and your attention, and she is yours. So fight hard for her, sweet Mama. Fight in the long watches of the night. Fight in the long, hard days. Fight with the love that is in your heart. Fight for her, because she is yours and you are hers.
Happy Mother’s Day, sweet Mama