First, thanks for bringing us into this world. Second, thanks for not taking us out of it. Even when it (probably) felt like we were bringing you down you kept raising us up to be better people every day.
You always placed us before anything work demanded of you. When we asked you to play, you jumped right in. You chose to play instead of washing dishes and we loved it. You let us put on a play, ate at our pop-up restaurant and paid me with my ‘laundry business’ with no complaints. When we asked you if we could hang up a photo, you let us cover our walls. When we yelled for you in the middle of the night after a nightmare, you came in and sat on the bed until we went back to sleep. When we asked you if we could play a sport or do an activity you signed us up. When we asked you to pick us up or help us, you came running. You didn’t discourage us from being creative or trying anything.
It’s what you did without us asking that stands out the most.
You attended every dance performance, basketball game, track meet, soccer, football, choir or performance. You woke us up, made us breakfast and watched for our bus even though you had your own full day of work to get ready for. You broke up fights, you taught us how to bake and cook, you taught us how to work outside, you taught us how to take care of ourselves and make a living.
Your humor and selflessness are some of our favorite traits. You have a light heartedness to every situation and always make us laugh. Your made-up radio game, your cursive handwriting from the tooth fairy, your fake snow prints from Santa and eating carrots like a reindeer made growing up so much fun.
You made up songs for us, you cleaned up our messes, you taught us to do as you said and not as you did (well….kinda), and you made sure we were always taken care of and comfortable. You lead us daily with your friendships, relationships and work ethic. You’ve always balanced what you needed to do and wanted to do and have guided us to figure out right and wrong for ourselves without pushing your own beliefs onto us. We never felt like work was replacing us but showed that you can do it all. We knew you were working to support us and set us up for success. You’ve raised two fiercely independent (fun, right?) hardworking, confident ladies and always affirmed us with nothing but positive thoughts. How could we ever fail when you were our biggest fan?
You’ve always been the first one we want to share news with because your reactions and excitement are the best. You’re our favorite person to play games with especially since you have such an obvious face when you’re stretching for that obvious Scattergories point.
I know you were going through a lot of the life events for the first time, same as we were. It’s difficult to give the answers that you didn’t have then. Even when you didn’t think you had it all right, we always saw your resilience.
You are also someone’s daughter, sister and aunt going through your own family issues as were we. You knew what was worth fighting for and what was better left unsaid. You saw co-workers being let go and carried their boxes to spare them the embarrassment. You’ve been caught in the worst of accusations while doing the most ethical thing. Even when you thought we didn’t see or don’t understand, we did and we do.
You guarded us from a lot of pain but you never shielded us from reality. You still make it obvious that time with us is your favorite thing to do. It means the world to be loved that much and we are so lucky to have had over 20 years with you so far.
As we enter the stage of our lives where we will become moms one day, it is scary as hell. There’s the distance and obviously it’s something we’ve never done. But you were there to teach us how to change diapers, when I needed help babysitting or when we didn’t realize babies opened their eyes so soon (oh yeah, that’s definitely kittens.) Your patience and funny voices when reading books radiated through your love for everyone. We hope to create the same traditions, establish the same support and we realize how important everything you did was.
Everything you did mattered to us and we realize how lucky we are for everything you’ve done for us. Even if we never said it, we notice it. Even if you didn’t think we did, we realized what you were doing for us. If our kids love us even half as much as we love you, it will be a win.
Someday when we’re
(super) rich we might be able to repay you. Until then I hope we make you proud.
We love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck.
Marin and Makaela