On Mother’s Day
Mother’s Day is coming up this month, and I want to take the opportunity to appreciate the mothers in my life: my mother and my wife. They have blessed my life and the lives of my kids in so many ways. I’m incredibly thankful for how much my mother sacrificed for me and my sister when we were growing up and for how my wife sacrifices for our four kids now.
My sister and I always felt taken care of when we were younger. My mom put her career as a nurse on hold to be present in our childhoods and raise us. She was incredibly giving and selfless, which makes her stand out to me as an amazing mom. My wife, Natalie, is equally as self-sacrificial in how she cares for our kids. She takes on the daunting challenge of home-schooling all four of our young children and, to me, that’s really taking it to the next level. She nurtures them in every sense of the word, is very much aware of all their needs, and loves them all immensely — and the kids love her and all the times she cuddles with them. She would do anything for them. The generosity of both my mother and my wife extends beyond their kids as well. They are both beautiful on the inside and outside.
Their selflessness is most evident in how they let friends and family laugh with them. My wife and my mother are both children of immigrants, and English was the second language in the houses they grew up in. My mother is of Dutch heritage, and my wife is Egyptian. This meant that for a while, they would both mix up little English phrases every now and again. My favorite “Hedy-ism” (named for my mother, Hedy) was when she used to try to say “We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.” Instead, she would say “We’ll get to that bridge when we come to it.” My favorite “Natalie-ism” was when she would mix the phrases “You’re driving me up the wall” and “You’re driving me batty,” saying, “You’re driving me up the batty wall.” In those instances, they would laugh and let us laugh with them. It doesn’t happen as much anymore, but when it does, we all still get a good laugh out of it.
As my sister and I have grown up, I’ve been able to see my mother’s influence in our lives. I can see the same potential for my kids, and I would be lying if I said it wasn’t largely because of their mother. We all have full and blessed lives, and I think that’s largely a testament to the hard work and sacrifices of both my mother and my wife.