This Mother's Day, I want to honor the mothers in my life who make me the mother I am.
To my own mother: you are everything I hope to be when I grow up. You are compassionate and selfless, hard-working and responsible, gentle and nurturing, hilarious and young at heart. You taught me how to cook a meal, iron a shirt, pack a lunch, make a bed, plant a flower, rock a baby, and save for a rainy day. You showed me how to spot the sad, comfort the weary, give to the poor, and to serve -- always to serve. You planted the seeds of faith and testimony in my heart that sustain me on good days and bad. You gave me the tools and experiences I needed to leave the nest when I was so very young, and although I'm sure you sometimes cringe at my decisions, you have always given me room to fly without judgment or criticism. Thank you.
To my mother-in-law: you are an example of goodness and generosity. Your kind heart is so very pure, so very full with thoughts of others. You give so much to everyone - time, money, resources, love - that it's a wonder you have any left for yourself. You have raised a son that has blessed my life immeasurably, and who is taking the wholesome, righteous traditions he learned from you and imparting them to his own wonderful children. Thank you.
To my grandmothers: you are a comfort and an inspiration.
Grandma Dent, you held me on your knee, taught me silly songs, worked puzzles, waved with two hands (and one foot), and gave me cookies when I didn't want to leave your house. You took me in as a college student, always feeding and transporting me when I was poor and car-less. You continue to inspire me with your gardening, your humor, your faith.
Grandma Dixon, you have always been an example of hard work, service, and righteous living. You raised seven wonderful children, including my fabulous father, served church missions, and developed talents that still amaze me. You were my family's favorite stop on I-84 when we lived in Oregon -- and we miss that!
Grandma Terry, you are just wonderful. You are a strong, independent woman who is happy and joyful in the journey of life. You have so much spunk and determination to try new things and to serve your community, the Lord, and your family. Thank you -- all of you.
To my dear friends and family members who are in the Mommy Boat with me: you are my guide and my inspiration. You help me find joy in the potty training, night waking, and mess making of little ones. You help me find peace amidst sibling rivalry, school drama, attitude issues, and obedience problems. You help me see the good in hard situations, to focus on the things that are important, to keep going when I want to run away, and to feel inspired when I feel inadequate. You share your wisdom and examples, often without saying a word. You give me support and strength for today and hope for the future. Thank you.
To all the mothers in my life: thank you for your love, your guidance, and for being who you are!