Tuesday, May 6, 2008

It takes strength to be a mother

My sister is one of my favorite moms. As a mother, I look up to her. I always have.

When we were young, my sister was probably my worst enemy. We fought like no one's business and, as my parent's can attest, we were terrible. She was popular and pretty and four years younger than me. I don't think she looked up to me, she was her own, independent person and didn't want me as a role model.

At 19-years-old, my sister got pregnant. She had just graduated from high school and had the world in front of her.

She called me on my birthday to tell me she was pregnant. I believe I was the first family member she told. To the horror of my mother, I suggested she get an abortion. I don't regret those words, but I am certainly glad she didn't have one because she gave birth to my nephew, Jimmy, and he is the coolest and he's my favorite boy on the plant.

When my sister got pregnant with her second son, Matthew (the second coolest little boy on the planet – next to Jimmy, of course), I was in a bad spot. My husband and I were going through a very rough patch that was caused partly by our two year struggle to have a baby. She called me on my birthday, again, and I cried. I was so angry at her for "accidentally" getting pregnant for a second time when I couldn't get pregnant even once.

I do regret my reaction to her news. If I were her, I probably would hate me for it. Somehow we overcame my selfish and childish reaction and she blessed me with the opportunity to be with her when she gave birth to Matthew. I couldn't believe how strong my sister was. I never saw that side of her before and I'm so glad I got to be there. Before that moment, I didn't know the strength it takes to deliver a baby.

After watching that unbelievable event, I walked out of the hospital room and said to my husband (who was waiting in the waiting room) that I was glad I hadn't gotten pregnant because there is no way I could deliver a baby. Three days later, I found out I was pregnant with Sophia. When I called my sister to tell her the news, she was so happy for me. She cried out of joy and I wish I would have done the same with her.

My sister now has an 8-year-old and a 2-year-old and she's raised both almost completely on her own. It takes a strong woman to do what she has done. Despite facing adversity that I could never have dealt with, my sister is raising her boys to be wonderful people. She works hard and she doesn't get enough credit for it.

This isn't nearly enough, but here goes anyway:

Carol, you are a wonderful mother and I don't think you are reminded of that often enough. You love your kids with a fierceness I admire and your children love you unconditionally. You have been through more than your years would ever suggest and you've kept your family together and happy despite the odds. I am so proud of you. Happy Mother's Day.


Shannon said...

What a wonderful tribute to your sister. It brought tears to my eyes and I don't know either one of you! I have an older sister who is raising 3 girls on her own (15, 8, and 6). I have no idea how she does it. I have the most amazing partner and only one little one and I sometimes feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders. God Bless The Single Mother!

Anonymous said...

You and your sister have both turned out to be wonderful parents to my grandchildren and I could not be more proud of each of you for it. Thank you for my grandchildren and Happy Mother's Day to you!
Love Mom

Anonymous said...

Diane, First I would like to say thank you so much. You are a great mother and sister, You are a very strong woman yourself I always looked up to you even though I might not of shown it I love you and those kids of yours, you made me cry it was very touching and it meens the world to me that you feel that way. Thank you again and Happy Mother's Day to you to, I love you

Anonymous said...

Yes, it made me cry, too. I'm loving the blog. It validates everything I am feeling as a mother, gives me hope and makes me laugh all at the same time. Diane, you are a wonderful mother & friend. Love, Tammy

Dave said...

As Carol,s live-in boyfriend for the last eight months i can merely concur with all that Diane said.She is an incredible Mother who holds down a full-time job also.She is the heart and soul of our household without question and of my heart without doubt.Beautiful story Diane ,it brought a tear to my eye.