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On being a mother. . . .

He turns fifty-five today, but when we first met thirty-four years ago, I knew he was the one. There was never a doubt in my mind, and without him, I wouldn't be the mother of my two wonderful sons.

I have never met a man, before or since, that I liked half as much and thought I could live with for thirty days, let alone thirty years. May 12 will be our thirty-first anniversary, and I love him even more now than I did back then.

The funny thing is, when I was growing up, getting married and having kids wasn't something I dreamed about. Oh, sure, I wanted romance as much as the next girl, but never having a boyfriend in high school will make you plan for other things in your future. I wanted to raise and train horses, but to do that, I needed money, so I went into nursing because I knew it paid well and that I would always have a job. That I liked doing it was just the icing on the cake. So, after three years in a diploma school, I graduated and began working the night shift.

I remember the first time I saw him; Bud, the night orderly, leaning over the desk and asking if we had anything he needed to do. He was absolutely adorable, and if there is such a thing as love at first sight, I think it happened to me. Later he admitted it was pretty much the same way with him.

We lost our first baby, but it didn't break us up. Bud went to engineering school and I went back for my BSN degree, and when I was about to graduate, we decided it was time and we had Michael, who was, of course, the cutest baby either of us had ever seen!

As he grew up, he was an outgoing little rascal, but never a bad kid, ever!

We took him all sorts of places. This photo was taken during an outing to Nashville, Indiana. Bud carried him around in a backpack most of the day, and he slept through part of it, but if we ever had a bit of trouble with him, I can't remember it.

And almost exactly three years later, we had Sam. He wasn't as easy a baby as Mike, but he was just as cute.

And only got cuter as he grew!

As time went on, however, Sam was diagnosed with a mild form of autism, which made being his mother a lot more difficult than being Mike's mom. But I'll have to say, the triumphs were more keenly felt with him, especially when, after we'd been told repeatedly that it would never happen, he passed the ISTEP test and actually graduated from high school.

Sam is my right hand man. He does the laundry, cleans the bathroom, feeds the cats and dog, empties the litterbox, takes out the trash, and is generally the one who keeps the rest of us in line. He is also the one who bought me a Mother's Day present. Granted, it was something he probably wanted, himself, but he did wrap it up and give it to me.

Mike will graduate from Purdue this coming Saturday, and I know I'll be proud; he's one of the most talented guys you'll ever meet, but if you could have only heard me on the day Sam came home to tell me he'd finally passed the English portion of the ISTEP test.

I screamed.


  1. It's wonderful when your children , themselves, turn out to be your reward for being a mother!! Kudos to you, Cheryl--they both sound wonderful! The DH sounds like an incredible partner, too--glad you had a great Mother's Day!!

  2. Love your mothers' day gift, Cheryl! My kids took me to the movies - saw IronMan. Not tops on my list, but it was on theirs. *shrugs. Time spent with them, especially at these ages, is gift enough.

    Love the insight into your family!

  3. What a beautiful family. And what a lovely idea to honor Mother's Day by talking about the people who made you a mother!

  4. Cheryl your pictures are always so great. They make me smile. And you have a way of telling stories (If that wasn't obvious) lol.

  5. You have a wonderful way with words. A very heart felt story that was wonderful to read. Thanks for sharing.

    Happy Mother's Day....

  6. Love the photos. You have two wonderful boys and the fact that you're such a proud mother of them, says so much. A Mom's love can help a child accomplish wonders. Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary too.

    Thoughts in Progress

  7. Glad you had a super mother's day, Cheryl!

  8. What a beautiful family, Cheryl! Thanks for sharing your kids and DH with us.

  9. Loved reading your story, Cheryl. Beautiful pictures and congratulations on Sam's major achievement! And, as the mother of a soon-to-be college graduate, whoo hoo! That is no small fete! Congrats to all of you!

  10. Thanks, ladies! Mother's Day was just fine... until I went to work, that is! It started off well, but soon turned into one wild and crazy night!

    We celebrated Mother's Day on Saturday night, going to dinner at the Outback and then saw Iron Man 2. Loved it!

  11. Cheryl,
    You should be proud. You have a great bunch of Boys at your house. Great pictures. I have to say you were a young hot dish yourself there girl. So it's no surprise why your Dh stuck it out 30 years. It's funny how we all enjoyed Iron Man 2 with our Sons this weekend. Great post Cheryl.

  12. Cheryl, I think this is best post I've ever read on this blog. Thank you for such an unlifting story of romance, family and love!

  13. My son and I LOVED Ironman. It was awesome!

  14. What a wonderful tribute to your family, Cheryl! I'm sure you had a great mother's day :)

  15. Cheryl,
    Thanx for such a GREAT post! LOVED that piccie of your DH holding the baby in the bentwood rocker. I had a rocker EXACTLY like that and have a picture of my mom sitting in it holding my son. :-) Wonderful memories!

    Your guys are all adorable! No wonder you keep them around. ;-) Glad you had a nice Mom's Day. I did too!


  16. Cheryl, your story is lovely! So romantic and blessed. Thank you for sharing a slice of your life with us. You know me, I love hearing of these happily-ever-after tales. :)

  17. Aw Cheryl, that brought a little tear to my eye! What a lovely story. Thank you for sharing it with us! Loved the pictures! My son will be entering high school next year and I'm not ready at all. You've got college gradution coming soon...WOW! many milestones!

  18. Thanks for all of your kind comments, ladies! I think my family is pretty neat, too, but then, I AM slightly prejudiced... ;-)

  19. What a lovely touching post Cheryl.
    You're all lucky to have each other. Congrats on the success of your 2 great kids (or young men I should say).

  20. Thank you for sharing a special glimpse into your family. You are a special mom!!

  21. Thanks, Mary G & Amanda--and my guys thank you, too!


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