For the record, Brandon doesn't consider this to be my first Mother's Day. It is my 2nd, as last year he was sure to pamper me with a pre-natal massage at Urban Nirvana and found the cutest card, wrote in it with a kid-like handwriting and signed it "Ella Christine". That was really big because up to that point, we were still throwing out names. I had finally told him that there were a couple to choose from but he needed to make the final decision. I wanted it to be Ella Christine, but who knew naming a child would be so hard! So for him to write that was a gift in itself...no more crunching of the brain to figure out what we were going to call this child once it left my womb.
This Mother's Day, I wanted to honor a few wonderful women in my life...
First, the matriarch of my family, Mommom. Mommom (or Anita) is a firecracker of a woman. She is eighty years old, lives in Philadelphia, and has been through some craziness this year to say the least. Our preacher says that the devil usually doesn't mess with you if he's not intimidated by your potential. That being said, I believe that even at 80, Mommom still has a ton of potential in her life, as evidenced by the struggles with her health that she has battled and overcome. If you ever met my Mommom, you'd agree that she doesn't seem like she's 80...more like 40! She has so much life inside of her, and will have you laughing your head off in 5 seconds flat. Brandon, Ella, and I were able to visit her in January, and it was a wonderful time together.
Next up is my mama...although she doesn't like me to call her Mama cause she's a yankee and it reminds her of the lady on the syrup bottle. But I digress...Anyway, Cristina or Cris is the apple that didn't fall far from the Anita tree. She is a pistol, and always full of joy, hope, and wisdom. Mom has also seen her share of troubles this year, but has consistently kept a positive attitude, and has inspired the rest of us to do so, too. This year, she has taken up a new hobby: Knitting. She has become quite the knitting fool and has really enjoyed her new endeavor. The thing I'm most proud of for Mom this year is her completing her respiratory rehab program at Duke. Though the doctors say that her lungs are bad, she has reached amazing levels of fitness this year and by the end of her stint at Duke, she was walking over a mile, lifting weights, riding a stationary bike, doing an aerobics class and keeping up with Daddy (a feat in itself). Mom, you do not know what an inspiration you are to me. Thank you for teaching me so much this year about being a godly woman who doesn't lose joy based on circumstances. I love you as your daughter and your friend.
Brandon's mama, Denice (she's southern and doesn't mind "Mama") has also been a big factor in my life this year. I feel as though our relationship has taken on a new level of love and respect, especially since Ella was born. "Mama Nissi" as she will be called, has been a wonderful help for me, and I have appreciated her eagerness and availability to spend quality time with Ella (and allow me to have a few precious hours to myself, even if it's just to go to the dentist or some other appointment). She has a great relationship with her granddaughter already, and it's evident that God has graced Denice with some amazing gifts and talents that she is passing down to Ella. On top of being a great mom and grandmom, Denice has also been working hard at buying, gutting and remodeling homes this year. She has her contractor's license and has finished at least one home and is working on (I believe) 2 more, including her own! I can certainly learn a lot from this woman of God on so many levels!
Finally, I need to thank my precious daughter for giving me the privelige of being her mommy...or mama. I am overjoyed at the sheer thought of each and every day with her. Waking up and walking in her room each morning to her waiting for me is an absolute delight, no matter what time it is. I love the potential that is on her life, and I love the opportunity I have to draw it out of her even at this early age. Our relationship is completely precious to me, and I can honestly say that I am a better person because she is in my life.
So Mommom, Mom, Mama Nissi, and Ella....
I LOVE YOU & Happy Mother's Day!