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Title: Reflections On Mother's Day

Category: Positive Parenting


     As an adopted child I have thought often in my 42 years about my mother.  My adoptive mother is a saint and I feel so blessed to have ended up in such a wonderful home.  I also have pondered often about my birth mother.  I wondered why she gave me up, if she was OK, and if she knew I appreciated and loved her for the gift of my life.  Over the past seven years, many of the questions I had growing up were answered when I found my birth mother and was able to thank her for that gift and fill in many gaps in my identity.  I definitely feel blessed and appreciative of both my birth mother and my adoptive mother and their nurturing of my life.

     My birth mother was a young college coed from a well-to-do family who found herself pregnant after a brief relationship in 1951.  She was brought from Florida to the Volunteers of America adoption agency in Louisiana.  She carried me for nine months and placed me for adoption.  She tried to go on with her life.  As so often happens, this was not easy and she had to suppress the pain but finally did.  She rebuilt her life and ended up having three more children and a pretty difficult life.  When we had our reunion experience about seven years ago, I think a lot of healing took place.  Perhaps some guilt that she had felt was cleared once she realized how thankful I was at what she had done for me.  We have stayed in touch and have a fairly close relationship but not a warm, loving relationship like I do with my adoptive mother who has truly nurtured me from the time I was two months old till the present day.  I pray for my birth mother, daily, and hope to help her in her old age in any way I possibly can. 

     My adoptive mother, Kathleen Halphen Prather, has been my greatest teacher throughout my life.  She has taught me by example and word the importance of loving others and devoting one's life to others.  She has been a totally unselfish and serving wife and mother all of her adult life.  She has tremendous compassion and empathy for anyone who is suffering and sick.  She has inspired me to also want to reach out to help anyone and everyone that I can, particularly the downtrodden, the poor, and the sick.  She read to me, sang to me, tucked me in, made sure I got to school, made sure I did my homework, and always supported me in everything I attempted throughout my childhood.  When I got to the junior high level, she challenged me to try to work a little bit harder to be a top student and to open up doors for scholarships and opportunities in life, whatever they might be.  She always reminded me that a person's record goes with them and that going the extra mile is the difference between greatness and mediocrity.  She reminded me that loving others and devoting one's life to serving others is more important than anything else and certainly more important than power, prestige and money.  I am so thankful that I had the kind of mother who raised me to want to "lose myself in others" as she did throughout her life and thus to find the true secret of happiness. 

     When I think of Mother's Day I think of my mother, Kathleen; my birth mother, Jean; and my wonderful wife, Patty, who has been a perfect mother for our three children.  Mother's Day is a wonderful reminder of how blessed we all are to have loving mothers and not to take them for granted.  When was the last time you told your mother she was precious to you, and reminded her how much you love her?  If it has been a while, use this Mother's Day to plan some special time with her.  Send her a rose and a hand written card or note.  Our mothers are truly a gift from God.  Mother's Day is one special day to celebrate that gift but we can also celebrate it every day of the year and should.  I thank you, God, for the mothers in my life.