I’ve been really lucky in my life. I’ve had so many strong women pouring into me, teaching me and supporting me.
I’ve had grandmothers who loved me unconditionally. Women who weren’t afraid to speak their mind, who were always available if I needed to talk, and who had been through some hard, hard times and come out on the other side tough and tender and full of grace.
I’ve had aunts that treated me as their own children. Women who cheered me on, scolded me when I needed it, and were always willing to pick me up and dust me off.
I’ve had teachers, mentors and employers who helped me grow, gave it to me straight and encouraged me to stretch just a little farther than I thought I could go.
I’ve had a sister, sisters-in-law, and friends like sisters that backed me up even when I was being an idiot, even though they told me while they were doing it that I was being an idiot. Women who listened to me vent, gave me advice, and offered a shoulder in the dark when my heart was too heavy to keep moving one more step.
I’ve had a mother-in-law (or my other mom, as I think of her in my head) that has shared her faith, her love, and her son without reservation. A woman who thinks of me as her daughter and treats me as if I joined her family 38 years ago instead of “just” 20.
And I’ve had a mom. A woman who taught me that it’s the little things in life that mean the most. A woman who embodies the phrase, “just do the next thing.” A woman who still wants me to call when I get home if I’ll be out late, who will rearrange her whole schedule if I need help, and who isn’t above smacking me in the back of the head if I get too sassy. A woman who, at her grandkid’s birthday party, will jump into a foam pit without reservation just because it looks fun and her granddaughter asked her to.
Let me be that woman.
That woman who pours love and strength into other women.
That woman who can speak her mind but also listen with her heart.
A woman who can get through the tough times without losing her compassion.
Let me be a woman who can make a child feel wanted, claimed, adored and seen.
A woman who will lift other women up, help them grow and push them to climb the ladder, take the leap, and never give up.
A woman who will get loyalty because she gives it.
Let me be that woman who will share her faith and her family without fear or reservation.
That woman who cares past the times when others would have let go. That woman who won’t stop trying and won’t let her loved ones down.
That woman who will say no when she needs to, and yes when others need her to.
Let me be the woman who will jump in the foam pit.