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Parenting
November 24, 2021

An Open Letter to All the Mommas this Thanksgiving

Post By:
Karey L. Bosack Greenstein, J.D.
Director of Planned Giving
Memorial & Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundations
Guest Contributor:

To all the mommas, 

In this season of Thanksgiving, take some time to be thankful for you – even if you have to warm up your coffee seven times, or if the tooth fairy forgets to leave something special under the pillow. Your littles do not judge you. They see you as the most important source of everything good in their lives. Because you are. You are fierce. You are tenacious. You are enough. You’ve got this.

Abundant Faith

My ankles were swollen

My back ached

I was bloated

I was nauseous

I was tired

I was emotional 

I was frightened

But then I heard, for the very first time, 

The sweetest sound I could ever imagine – your heartbeat.

And I was thankful.


My emotions were overthrown

By raging hormones

I couldn’t eat what I wanted

I couldn’t help but feel overwhelmed

Consumed by the unknown

Would I succeed as a mother?

Did I have enough time to prepare?

How did I prepare?

But then, on the black and white screen, I witnessed ten tiny fingers and ten perfectly formed toes.

And I was thankful.


My body and my mind were strangers to me

I couldn’t get up from a sitting position unassisted

I was compelled to clean and organize everything in sight

I craved foods I was told I could not eat

I started being forgetful

I had to frequent the bathroom often

My navel popped out 

What was this “glow” people talked about and when would it be my turn?

I had no control over my own body. But then…

Something spectacular occurred – you moved from within me

And I was thankful.


My “to do” list wasn’t complete

The nursery needed painting

I hadn’t yet perfected your birth plan

There was unfinished business waiting for me at the office

Yet I was rushed to the hospital

Placed inside a cold, sterile room with the brightest, most blinding lights

A team of medical professionals rushed in

I was told there were complications and in that instant Nothing. Else. Mattered.

I was an inconsolable, nervous wreck.

But then – I heard you cry. It made me cry. Time stopped.

And I was thankful.

I held you, this tiny little person – my tiny little person, in my arms

With awe and wonder, I inhaled your newborn scent

And caressed your porcelain skin

Wide-eyed, you looked at me

With a love I had never known

My tears of pain and agony transformed into tears of joy

Nothing would ever break our bond

Life before your existence paled in comparison

Because at that moment, I became your momma.

You became my purpose.

And I was thankful.


My house was filled with things

But when you entered it, it became home.

Yes, the nights were long.

Being sleep deprived was an understatement. 

Days went by with unkempt hair

I permeated spit up

My shirt stained with remnants of a “blow out”

Showering, undisturbed, became the highlight of my week.

I was unrecognizable, even to myself.

But you were growing right on track. You were thriving.

And I was thankful.


Coos turned into smiles

Smiles turned into giggles

You rolled

You sat up

You crawled

You ate your first foods

You conquered your first steps

You uttered your first words

With each milestone, I beamed with pride. 

And for that I was thankful.


Those first moments alone with you quickly went by

I couldn’t keep you all to myself any longer

I was apprehensive at the thought of anyone other than myself 

Caring for you with the gentleness only I could provide

Loving you with the delicate warmth that only I could give

Encouraging you with a nurturing touch only I could offer

I felt cheated.

But I had family to support me, to support us

To help ease the transition

And I was thankful.


I have been afflicted with many difficult decisions – 

Which doctor for you to see?

Which daycare, which school, which extracurricular activity to enroll you in?

Did I make the right decision?

What is the best decision? 

No amount of books or classes could prepare me for motherhood

No seminars could “teach” me how to heal a crushed spirit or mend a broken heart 

Yet you believe my kisses are magic,

Confident my hugs and cuddles are chicken soup for the soul

Your trust in me unwavering. Your faith in me abundant.

And for that I am thankful.


As you’ve grown older, it has not gotten easier.

It’s true what they say – you blink and the years go by

The frenzy of long nights waking every three hours to breastfeed 

Has turned into chaotic days of rushing with hardly any time to exhale

Making sure you are fed, your homework done, the house clean and the bills paid

Chauffeuring you to this practice and that, not to mention endless social engagements.

You outgrow your things so quickly and Eat. So. Much. Food. 

But you are taller, a little thicker. You eagerly tell me about the things you are learning.

I see you smile, hear you laugh and watch your confidence soar.

You. Never. Stop. Talking.  But you are finding your own voice.

And for that I am thankful.


Many days I still have barely enough time to put myself together

Balancing the juggling act of life

Stressors of work, attending parent-teacher conferences, 

Entertaining your friends’ families at our home,

Making sure you have enough  

Worrying if I am enough…

But then you adoringly whisper, “Mom, you are beautiful.”

You wrap your arms around me and, with pure, raw, real gratitude, exclaim, “I love you, Mommy!”

You make me feel worthy.

And for that I am thankful.


Some days I feel guilty I cannot give more – 

More of my undivided attention

More of my presence

I cannot be like that mom who seems to have it all, who does it all.

But then, for something so simple to me (and oftentimes unplanned), 

Whether it be giving you fast food for dinner because I failed to make the time to cook,

Or it be buying you a new shirt for a themed occasion 

(purchased only because I just read the email your school sent me weeks ago),

You delightfully proclaim, “Thank you! You are the best mom ever!”

Taken aback, I reflect. Your genuine appreciation assures me that I must be doing something right.

And for that I am thankful.


Sometimes the beds are left unmade, the dishes piled up

Some weeks I may not mop the floors and will order take out more than once

No matter how hard I try, we seem to always be running a few minutes behind

But you don’t seem to mind, let alone notice.

You revel in the impromptu dance parties and “Sunday Fundays” in our backyard

You look forward to family movie nights and homemade pizzas

You cherish the intangible – our togetherness

No matter how dysfunctional or absurd our life sometimes is

Your love is unfiltered. It is truly unconditional. 

And for that I am thankful.


I remember having little hands paw at me constantly

Asking for “uppy” and wanting to be carried everywhere no matter how tired or weak I was.

I recall the pitter patter of your footsteps scurrying across the hall

From your big kid bed into my room, pleading, begging, to sleep with me just one more time.

I wanted so badly to have some “me” time,

But you required all of me…

You’re now too big to be carried

You willingly sleep in your own room, oftentimes shouting “Good night!” from across the hall

I sometimes have to ask you for a hug before you rush out the door,

But…there are still moments when you reach for my hand or you want me by your side 

And I feel needed

And for that I am thankful.


I still worry.

I will always worry.

For your safety.

For your well-being.

For you to make the right decisions.

For you to be humble and accountable when you do not.

Being a mom is tough.

It is oftentimes draining.

But it is also beautiful and empowering.

The challenge lies in perspective – 

Ask me a thousand times over and I would do it all again.

I have learned to embrace it all.

And for that I am thankful.


You have taught me not only patience, but to trust in myself.

You have taught me compassion and resilience.

You have taught me to be kind to myself.

You have taught me it’s okay to leave the laundry unfolded

And ignore the crushed Cheerios on the floor

Even if just for a second – 

Because the true magic in life is about being, living, in the Now

Enduring the good, the bad, the ugly

And for that, I am thankful – for you, my sweet child, 

My most sacred accomplishment

And this blessed gift of motherhood 

Which has taught me to be thankful for me.

For more inspiration on motherhood and life, follow me at www.kaleidoscopelife.blog and on Facebook @KaleidoscopeMomma


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In this season of Thanksgiving, take some time to be thankful for you – even if you have to warm up your coffee seven times, or if the tooth fairy forgets to leave something special under the pillow. Your littles do not judge you. They see you as the most important source of everything good in their lives. Because you are. You are fierce. You are tenacious. You are enough. You’ve got this.