There are times I (Lisa) tell my husband, “I’ve turned into my mother.” While most people say this phrase with a tinge of dread or regret, I say it with pride. Shelly and I are blessed to have had such a positive role model.
As a leader and volunteer, she demonstrated to us how to mend fences, get along with others, volunteer, be part of a community, and serve others.
She has unbelievable planning capabilities as demonstrated on the numerous complicated trips we’ve taken together. Trust me, if you ever want to go to Europe for two weeks and visit five different countries, she is indispensible. Caravanning 1800 miles in three minivans with 15 people, including 7 young kids and an infant? Want to organize a national or regional conference for 100-1500 of your closest colleagues? She’s your woman everytime.
Mom has an incredibly engaging way with people, an enthusiasm for life that spills over to everyone she meets. She can strike up a conversation with anyone. When we were hesitantly starting the blog and attended our first CNMC, she came with us and shamelessly promoted us to everyone she met.
Our mother is the first to support you when you are down, even when you are wrong. As a teenager, when I was being difficult she continued to offer me unconditional love and support, albeit with a firm dose of discipline as needed.
When any of her children or in-laws need help, more often than not Mom will drop whatever she is doing and work it into her schedule. Whether Shelly needs childcare for a sick daughter, or I’m ill and my kids need a place to play so I can rest, she will be there for us.
Her dedication to her mother and mother in law is awe inspiring. In rough times, no one would blame her if she let a visit or two slide, but she is there, as promised, always with a smile and a kind word. She has embraced the care givers at her mother’s assisted living facility, building personal relationships and helping them realize the value and worth of their job taking care of our loved ones. She thoughtfully lets them know how much we appreciate all the small things they do for her without asking.
She is a loving example of the woman I want to be, the type of mother I hope I am for my own children, and the supportive wife I need to be for my husband.
I cannot imagine having a different role model than my mother. I want to grow up to be just like her.
Happy Birthday Mom!