Today I will dedicate this post to my MOM!
Diane Lynn Hossie (maiden) Odom (first marriage)Barnes (current marriage)
My mom has been my mom for almost 26 years. Not only has she been my mom, but I can honestly say that she has been my very best friend for 25 years, 11 months, and 7 days!! Now, let me clarify what "very best friend" is NOT.....she was never the best friend mom that bought me and my friends alcohol, or let me have guys spend the night, or let me spend the night with guys, she never let me roam around town without her knowing where I was, or let me go off on co-ed trips. Yes, it was frustrating to me when I was younger because alot of my friends had parents that let them do those things. Now that I'm a mom myself, I can totally see that the boundaries she set for me were more than necessary! So, what DID my mom do? Well....first of all, she was a single mom until I was in 10th grade. Growing up without a dad was hard (I'm just now starting to see how much it unknowingly affected me), but my mom did a FABULOUS job of raising me and my sister. She knew how to demand respect, but she also knew how to have fun while doing it! She would let me and my sister skip school to take us to the fair, she would take me and my friends rolling, she would come dance with us at some of the Methodist dances, she was all about a slumber party, she would turn our (hideous) minivan into a "limo" (haha!!), she would take us on picnics, trips to the beach, go on field trips with my class, and despite our 1 income family....we NEVER did without! We may not have had a closet full of designer clothes, but she worked hard to make us happy. It makes me tear up just to think about all the sacrifices she made for us. My mom starting cleaning houses when I was very young, and she still does. For those of you who are homeowners, you know that cleaning your house is hardwork! She would clean 4 or 5 houses a day in order to pay our bills, put food on our table, and make sure we never did without. She didn't just work to "get by".....she worked her butt of so that we could have nice things. Some of my favorite memories are when she would let me go clean houses with her, and I would pretend like that was my house. It was so fun, because it was like I had lots of houses :)
My mom dated several guys throughout my childhood, but I knew none of them were "the right one." Until my 9th grade year. She met this guy at a body shop where our car was being fixed. I remember when she told us about him, I knew. I knew he was the one. Just by the way she talked about him. It was kinda bittersweet. I wanted my mom to be happy, but I didn't want to share her with anyone. So, Billy proposed to my mom about 3 months into their relationship. I don't remember alot about the engagement, and it was probably because I wasn't willing to open up. I mean, I had gone like 9 years without a dad. I didn't know how to act. I finally started to warm up to him after the marriage, and I grew to love him like my own dad. He was everything I could've ever imagined for a step dad....no, for a DAD....to be! But enough about Billy...I'll save that for Father's Day :)
So, back to my mom. It really was an adjustment for me when she got married. I didn't like sharing her. I was used to having her full attention, so I didn't like her giving attention to someone else. But I adjusted to it, and after a while I finally realized that Billy wasn't just someone taking up my mom's attention....he was someone that completed our family.
Over the last 10 years I have seen my mom happier than ever! And when Abby came into the picture (well, after the shock/disappointment wore off), her happiness went to a new level. It absolutely warms my heart to see my mom with my children. She would do ANYTHING for my kids. She's already asking when #3 will be here. (not real sure if there will be a #3??) But not only is she a great "Mimi"...she is STILL a great mom! I know that I could call her anytime and ask for anything and she would do everything in her power to meet my need!! For heavens sake, she comes to my house on a regular basis to help me clean and organize my house. Some may call that spoiled. I just call it lucky! Lucky to have a mom that cares that much about me and my happiness.
Mom, I love you with all my heart. I'm so glad that God has allowed us 25 years together, and I hope He allows us many more years to come. I don't know what I'd do without you!!! You provided me with a lifetime of good memories. When I look back on my childhood, I smile. And it's because of YOU! Given the circumstances, my childhood could've been hard and sad. But you worked hard to make life good for me. For Lauren. For you. You found the Lord. And you shared Him with us. For that, I will be forever grateful! Thank you for being the BEST mom in the world! Happy Mother's Day!