#1 Daughter - This one taught me tolerance, patience and kindness. She taught me that a family is not connected by blood but by love. She taught me how to share the love of a man who loved us both (differently of course) when I wanted to be selfish. She taught me that being a mom has nothing to do with age but with wisdom. She taught me to look beyond what's on the surface to the person who resides beneath.
#2 Daughter (niece) - This one taught me patience, to breathe and think before I respond and not to take what people say at face value. She taught me to search for what's behind the words to the real meaning beneath. She taught me that some people just have to be loved as they are...warts and all. And she taught me that even I, at my advanced age, can be played like a violin and to guard my heart just a little.
#1 Son (nephew) - This one taught me that courage and perseverence comes in lots of shapes and sizes...even in little boys who grow up to be wonderful men. He taught me that love really can conquer all and that it knows no bounds. He taught me that with faith, anything is possible. And he taught me to never give up because just when things are darkest, the light shines through and turns everything around.
#2 Son (first born) - This one taught me that I had places in my heart I didn't know were there. He taught me that I could love unconditionally and what it felt like to know you would die for another human being. He taught me that everyone doesn't share the same idea of a "good time" and that being an introvert isn't a bad thing...it just is. He taught me that my children don't have to have the same views on life that I do, but they have to be able to discuss them openly with me.
#3 Son (first born twin) - This one taught me to fight for what my children need and not to care about what people think of me. He taught me that marching to a different drummer is not a bad thing and that more people would be happier if they listened more closely to the band in their head. He taught me to be more intuitive about my children and their needs and to barge right in and make it right no matter what they say. He taught me to look back and remember myself at a given age so that I would know how he was feeling and could give him the love and respect I so desperately craved at that given age.
#4 Son (second born twin) - This one taught me that the "easy" child can sometimes be overlooked and needs some special attention. He taught me that a Little League baseball game is better than 50 yard line tickets to a Redskins game. He taught me what being there for your children REALLY means and that how you react can make all the difference in their lives. He taught me that being charming and humble at the same time are possible.
All of my children continue to teach me everyday and for that I am grateful. Their lessons are some of the most important lessons I have ever learned. If I have taught them a fraction of what they have taught me then I have done my job as their mom.
I love you guys...you are my universe.
"You may give them your love but not your thoughts, for they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams." ~Kahlil Gibran