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Mother's Day is more like Thanksgiving for adoptive moms

Proud adoptive mom and veteran of the infertility wars who now likes to help educate and support others through their family building journeys. Also adores llamas and pygmy goats.

This Mother's Day, I'm sending love and gratitude to the women who gave me my kids

It's almost Mother's Day.

As a little girl, I loved making cards and presents for my mom for the occasion. It was a happy little day where we would spend time together as a family, and often make our spring pilgrimage to the local garden center to pick out our summer annuals. Nothing too complicated, nothing too heavy. And as I grew older, I never gave it much more thought. I mean, I still love my mom very much, and often tell her as much. And I adore my mother-in-law too. I'm lucky to have both women in my life, and of course I let them know that on Mother's Day.

Flash forward to Mother's Day now, and I'm so very thankful for the two little people who live in my house and call me Mom. I've enjoyed watching how excited they are to share with me the latest treasure they have made for me, and I always welcome any opportunity for extra hugs and kisses. I'm not saying that we don't have bad days along with the good, but after all we went through to become a family (including infertility treatments and failed adoptions), there really isn't a day that goes by when I'm not consciously grateful for these special little spirits. And frankly, that's the easy part of this holiday.

For me though, there's so much more to Mother's Day. Because my journey to motherhood included adoption, I can't help but think about two very important women in our lives: the two women who gave my children life. They could have made other choices. But they didn't. Instead they continued these pregnancies, knowing full well they weren't going to raise these children. Then, of all the people they could have chosen, they chose us to parent these kiddos. And even though they made this choice willingly, I know it wasn't done lightly. For me to have the privilege of being a mother, there are two other mothers who made a heartbreaking decision, regardless of how right it may have been for them and these babies. The magnitude of that can be overwhelming sometimes. On occasion, people have said things to my husband and me about how we did this amazing thing by adopting these two kids. It's a sweet sentiment, but really, we just wanted to be parents. The real heroes in our family's backstory are those two women. We know it, our children know it and when presented with an opportunity to do so, I let anyone else interested know it too.

I think of these two often, not just on Mother's Day, and hope that they are doing well. We do not have ongoing contact with either of them, by their choice, so I can't say these things directly to them. And so this Mother's Day, as I have done in years past, I'm sending so much love and gratitude to the two women who made the biggest impact on not only the four of us in our immediate family, but also on our other family members and friends who cherish our son and daughter. The two of them brought so much goodness to our lives. I hope they are finding goodness in theirs and know how very treasured they are.

Happy Mother's Day.

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