Thirty years ago today, at 11:38am, you brought me into this world. You worked so hard for me to join your family, and after two miscarriages, I was your rainbow baby.
For much of those thirty years, I was totally blind to all that you had done for me. Now that I am also a mother, I can see clearly all that you have given me.
Words like pregnancy, miscarriage, labor, birth, sleep, baby, and mom all lacked feeling. Now they run deep. I can feel what you felt–emotionally and physically to make me your daughter and shape me into the person I am today. The pain, the heaviness, the responsibility, the love, and the joy–day after day, night after night, year after year.
For forty weeks, you carried me in your belly, while also caring for a toddler. And then you went through a gigantic transformation–giving birth to your second daughter. I now know what you went through for me to enter this world. I now understand and appreciate your love.
For the first few years of my life, every single day…
YOU held me tight.
YOU changed my diapers.
YOU nourished me.
YOU changed my clothing.
YOU were sleep deprived and tired.
YOU answered every cry.
YOU were responsible for huge decisions, my development, and safety.
YOU hugged me and kissed me.
YOU were there when I went to bed and there when I woke up.
YOU spoke to me, smiled at me, and read to me.
YOU were my teacher.
YOU comforted me at every turn.
YOU watched me fall and get back up.
YOU celebrated all of my firsts.
YOU made huge sacrifices.
All of this, YOU did for me. Time after time, year after year. Thousands of times. The gifts you have given me can never be repaid. The love, the time, the tears, the feelings, the struggle, the exhaustion, the hard work. But I will pay it all forward.
When I read Asher books before bed, I often envision you reading to me as a young child. I can see clearly your love, comfort, and patience. Because of YOU, it all runs in my blood.
Because of you, I am patient and caring. Because of you, I have a deep love for others. Because of you, I have a love of yoga. Because of you, I have a love of animals and children. Because of you, I have a love of baking. Because of you, I care about the world. Because of you, I give back to my community. Because of you, I cherish quiet time. I am who I am because of you.
Some of the best life lessons and gifts you have given me are a sense of security and hope. You have always been there for me. Even if that meant giving me rules and boundaries.
My birthdays are now very much filled with thoughts about you. Today, you have been my mother for 30 years. I have only been a mother for a little over three years, yet I am already forever changed. The profound impact Asher and motherhood have had on my life leaves me speechless. What you have experienced, felt, and been through with me over the last 30 years is amazing and not forgotten. You truly devoted your life to motherhood so that I could grow to be a healthy and happy human.
The days are long, so very long. But the years are short. No one understands this better than a mother. Today on my 30th birthday, I smile because of you. Today, I celebrate you. Your love, dedication, and hard work for over 30 years.
You have always shown me love and I have always felt loved. But now I truly understand YOUR love. The day Asher was born, I was changed forever. Although I am not you, I can now appreciate what today, February 1st, might mean to you. Thank you for bringing me into this world 30 years ago. I love you.