A Mother’s Day Special
‘There is so much beauty in this world if you just look for it. ‘
-Kate Swenson, Mom, Author, Inspiration
So many quotes to choose from…
- ‘If at first you don’t succeed, try doing it the way mom told you to in the beginning.’ – unknown
- ‘I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them.’ – Phyllis Diller
- ‘The most important jewels that will ever be wrapped around your neck are the arms of your children.’ – Pink
- ‘Life doesn’t come with a manual; it comes with a mother.’ – unknown
Becoming a mom…
I became a mom for the first time some 37+ years ago. Motherhood didn’t come with a manual. In fact, motherhood came two months sooner than it was supposed to. I guess my oldest wanted to begin to challenge me. And that he did. When I brought Matt home from the hospital 5 ½ weeks later, he wasn’t even quite five pounds yet. Lucky for me, my 14-year-old cousin lived across the street from us. I could count on Laura to suggest a new way to sooth my newborn. When it was time to feed him real food for the first time, she was there to help. Now a mother to two fabulous teenagers, she is a natural.
My role model in so much that I am doing now has always been my mom. My boys tell me that I can be stubborn and not one to give up. Seems that I got that from my mother and it was handed down to her from her mother, my Bubbe.
Brings me to…
This all brings me to a mom who I think is special in so many ways, Kate Swenson. Kate dreamed of being a mother from a very young age. While other young girls dreamed of being a ballerina or president, being a mother was hers. And that dream came true 11 years ago with the birth of her son, Cooper. Kate and her husband now have two more sons and a daughter. Her dream though came with an unexpected path. At the age of three, Cooper was diagnosed with nonverbal autism.
Kate is the creator of the blog and Facebook page Finding Cooper’s Voice and the author of the newly released Forever Boy: A Mother’s Memoir of Autism and Finding Joy. Yes, the word is JOY. Listen to a woman who exceeds our expectations of what motherhood is. Cooper now has a vocabulary of 20 words. He’s in 5th grade.
Finding joy and The Forever Boy…
Kate dedicated her book this way: ‘To the boy who smells like the wind, the boy who saved me, the boy who healed our family, the girl who completed us and my husband for never giving up on me.’
When she started her blog, Kate was doing it for herself. She wanted to know that she was not alone. And she found out that she wasn’t. She just had to be the one to start. Today she has close to a million followers who engage with her and helped her to build a community. It’s not just about autism. Add in parenting and motherhood. Kate’s mission is to create a safe place for families and teens with special needs to come together and laugh, cry, and support each other.
This is a quote from Finding Cooper’s Voice which Kate posted Friday:
Last night when I opened my son Cooper’s backpack I found a gift that he had made me.
Which may sound silly. I’m sure most mothers are used to getting these types of gifts from their child’s daycare and then preschool and eventually school.
I’m not though.
Crafts clumsily put together with love, glue, glitter and color.
This one was perfection. When I showed it to him he clapped and gasped. He knew.
He can’t say Happy Mother’s Day…but he knows.
As I sipped my coffee, I let the alligator tears fall.
A very special conversation on a very special Sunday…
Happy Mother’s Day
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. We’re all a ‘work in progress’ and no, we didn’t come with a manual.
And a couple more firsts for my family…the 1st Mother’s day for my daughter-in-law and mine as a grandma!