A Mother’s Love:: Honoring “My Other Mother”
Thank you for raising the man of my dreams.
I remember back in the summer of 2000: I had recently broken up with a boy I thought I loved— and then you and your husband came on staff at my church. Having met you a few years prior to that, I was glad to see your familiar, friendly face. I remember one time, after you had been at my church for a few months, the lights were dim during worship time and you came up to my side and put your arm around my shoulder. I don’t even remember if you were silent or whether you started praying for me. All I remember is how I felt: for the first time in several months— because my mom lived on the other side of the country— I physically felt a mother’s love. Your soft touch immediately melted my aching heart and I turned to you, hugged you and started crying. I hardly knew you, yet you felt like a mother to me. Something about the way you held me that day made me feel… Important. Seen. Cared for. And I so desperately needed that at that point in my life. With my heart still tender from my parents’ divorce and now a fresh wound inflicted by my recent breakup, I just needed a mom to hug me and hold me and pray with me. And you did that night. Thank you for that.
Who would have known that, several months later, your oldest son and I would begin dating and eventually commit our lives and our futures to one another?!
I’ve told you this before, but I will tell you again: I am so very grateful that you and “Grandpa Dude” are my in-laws. Thank you for raising such a wonderful son. He is a noble-hearted, hard-working, intelligent man whose passion for justice and heart for the weak and innocent is unparalleled in anyone else I know. He is funny and humble, has incredible self-reflection and team-building skills, and is wholeheartedly devoted to me and the kids. He’s a loving, playful, thoughtful father and he is a faithful, pure-hearted, courageous husband. You and I both know he is not perfect, but he is perfect for me. And for all you did in all of those growing up years to teach him right and wrong and to model for him what healthy communication, healthy parenting, and what a real-life healthy marriage looks like: I cannot thank you enough. A huge part of why our marriage is as strong as it is, is because of all of the love and care you and Dad poured into him all of those years before he and I ever met. Thank you for all the regular, mundane, seemingly insignificant moments throughout those years that you poured your lives into him and helped form him into the incredible man he is. You did such a wonderful job.
So I’ll say it again: Thank you for the gift of your son. And thank you for always being here for me, too— for counseling me when I ask for it, for cheering me on when I am weary, and for supporting and praying for me and our family through all of the seasons we’ve gone through. I am so grateful to have you in my life. Thank you for being “my other mother.”
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What about you?
Have you ever been surprisingly and deeply impacted by a simple hug or a word of encouragement from a friend? How can you “put yourself out there” and offer that type of support to someone else today?
Please feel free to share your journey in the comment section below.