Originally published May 2009
In a conversation about Facebook, a friend once stated that anyone from their past not currently in their lives probably doesn’t need to be there. I wholeheartedly disagree. Though there are many people from my past who are not and will not ever be part of my present, there are many people that I am glad to have found again. The opportunity to get to know who they are as adults is a true blessing.
But as much of a blessing as it has been, it has also been a reminder of the life I once saw for myself turning out much differently than I imagined. I had imagined myself married by 22, or soon after, and the mother of 12 children at some point. That has obviously not happened and seeing people I grew up with and the kids I once taught, now adults, living the life I once imagined for myself was at first a not-so-fun reminder of dreams long gone.
As time passed and I got to know all of these people as adults I began to feel more and more blessed for the life I have lived. I’ve known some really amazing people throughout my life and I can proudly say that we have all grown into pretty cool adults. Their lives, just like mine, have probably taken different paths than they imagined and somehow all turned out just fine.
As it’s Mother’s Day, I am once again thinking about life’s paths, mine in particular. I’m not the Mom to the 12 kids I planned, yet I feel like I have been a mother. While I appreciate the difficulties and rewards of true motherhood, I feel that God had another plan for me. He put me in a career that consists of the daily nurturing of young lives. I get to affect our youth on a very personal level each and everyday and I feel that not having given birth didn’t fully deny me the blessing of being a Mom.
The reason I write this is because my wonderful staff, consisting solely of students, gave me a Mother’s Day card at our meeting this past week. I just re-read what they wrote and I’m once again touched by their words and by the fact that they see me in that light. They’re not my only kids, I have others and if you’re someone who knows anything about my day to day work life you’ll know what I mean when I say they often consume my life.
Not a day goes by that I’m not thinking and worrying about them. If I had my own children I wouldn’t be able to be there in the way that I am for these young adults. Their mistakes bring disappointment and their triumphs bring me joy, and I am rewarded each and every single day. I believe that this is proof that God has a plan for all of us and sometimes we just have to trust and have faith. I didn’t necessarily get what I wanted, and there are and will be days when I resent that, but I’ve never lacked what I needed.