An Open Letter to my momma

Momma,

You are an angel, as is every mother. They give their babies baths, sleep with them on difficult nights, ensure they’re healthy and cared for. Most people forget to be thankful for these little blessings, as they receive them when they, too, are no bigger than a teddy bear.

Thank you, Momma.

Thank you for holding a semi-conscious me on my bathroom floor the night this all started, for telling me you were there, and that the help I know you were dying to give me was coming, in case I didn’t know. Thank you for holding me close so I wouldn’t slip away from you when I passed out again and again; for reassuring me and kissing my head when I told you I thought I was dying, even though I’m sure you worried I was too.

Thank you, Momma.

For smoothing the back of my hand with your thumb, for pulling me up against you when we found out what I had. You doubted what we were doing to treat it and how, but I know each double-check of a doctor or hospital was a double-check that I would be sitting across from you today. Thank you.

Thank you, Momma.

Thank you for sitting in my hospital bed with me as I cried in pain, because in those hot and pain-chased moments, your cool hand on my bare back and your calming voice were an oasis of relief. Thank you for the nights in hospital I couldn’t sleep until 4 a.m. because of medication and “neuro checks”, where you stayed up listening to Michael Scott until I’m sure you dreamed about him.

Thank you, Momma.

Thank you for ignoring my embarrassed testiness, for washing my hair when stretching to do so still was to tender. I’m sure it was a sight easier to wash my hair when I was a baby, before I dared doubting you knew what you were doing. For doing so when I trusted you to avoid hurting my stitches far more than I trusted myself. For brushing my hair so I still felt like myself – well, as much as I could. For giving up your bed from the night it started to sleep at my side, for making me wake you up every time I had to go to the bathroom, just so you knew I made it back okay.

Thank you, Momma.

For being strong in seeing your own mother pass, for showing me the faith I feel in myself, that you knew she was free. Thank you for all the days you drove me out to radiation and stayed with me, though I know you wanted to be holding onto her. Thank you for the days you came home early from her bedside because I was too tired to keep my eyes open, and know I wish I could’ve given you more time.

Thank you, Momma.

Because every time you look at me and are amazed with my resolve, poise, and faith, that’s you. I can’t take credit for being who I am, though I think I’m made out to be a better person than in reality, because that’s you and dad. I didn’t wake myself up and drive myself to church growing up. I didn’t suggest family Bible study when the Devil got the best of me at wake-up time. You raised me to be a firm, trusting Christian, and I can never offer you enough thanks for that. What I’m equally thankful for is how you turned to God in this, making it the easiest thing in the world for me to do the same.

The past six months have given you lots of firsts you’re never prepared for, and you turned to God with each one of them. You showed me how to face challenges head on, build a community around myself, and support them in their struggles the same way they do with mine. You’ve edited my blogs, viewed the Pinterest outfit I just had to show you when it was 3 a.m. and I was hopped up on steroids, offered a cool rag for my head when my chemo made me so sick I couldn’t leave the house. The friends you’ve made who formed prayer circles around me, the school you work at where you raise up more children than myself on a straight path (you are a true angel for that, I couldn’t do it), and the outlets you’ve created for me to share my story are all truer blessings than I could ever sing your praises for. Here’s to many more years of heart-to-hearts, movie marathons, and sitting next to you because I have nothing nice to say. 😉 Thanks for all the years you’ve been a Proverbs 31 package, Mom!

Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.”

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