Mother and daughter
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It's great to have a day to be celebrated by your family for everything you do all year round, but what are you doing for yourself?
Instead of writing to your daughter or son this year about artful ways they could shower you with love on Mother's Day, I wanted to write to you, from one mother to another mother because I'm thinking about it a little bit differently than I have in the past. Maybe it's because my "baby" has grown up and is away at college, maybe it's because my nest is empty or maybe it's just because.

First, don't worry, I know you will be showered with love and great stuff on Mother's Day by your kids because you deserve it and you are loved. But, something changed this year, and instead of wanting to be appreciated for being a great mom, I feel totally appreciative to have had the opportunity to be a mom.

Don't get me wrong, I love a thoughtful gift. I love when my daughter writes me a poem, makes me a card, bakes me a cake, e-mails me, washes my car or sends me flowers, all to say how much she loves me on Mother's Day. But, truth be told, I love being her mom most of all.

I can't think of one other thing I do that even begins to compare to the joy I feel as a mom. The job is a labor of love. There are days that are painful and test you for sure, and then there are those glorious days where you pass with flying colors.

Next: What motherhood really means
Moms aren't just those gals that do the birthing—they are also the stepmothers, mentors, teachers, friends and people who provide nurturing and love. I am talking about the women in our lives who teach, care, listen, act, hug, wipe away the tears, tell us everything is going to be all right, say no, say yes, guide us, who pray and have faith in us.

These special women share the blessings of a mothering spirit as they touch lives and hearts forever. They mother because of their great capacity to love, and they give of their generous spirit without expectation.

Mothers get to love with all their heart, they care and nurture another life, sing songs out loud, play make believe, snuggle under the covers, splash in bubble bath, play peekaboo, dance when the spirit moves them, carpool, jump in the pool and do anything it takes to help their child grow to be all they can be.

This year, take some time—just for you—to reflect on what it means to be a mom. Journal a list of the joys that mothering has brought you, write a poem about what mothering means to you, think about who mothers you and, if the spirit moves you, write your children a letter and thank them for giving you the opportunity to be their mom.

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