I had just picked her up from child care and, upon leaving, I witnessed as she said Mama to the wrong person. She was just learning how to talk and of course I was always trying to get her to say Mama, pointing at myself and saying, “Who’s this?”
As we were about to leave she looked at Tami and said “Mama.”
I was a single working mom with limited options to stay at home with my child. That was bad enough – and now Anna was calling the wrong person Mama. Of course I was worried and my heart hurt.
After lots of processing and prayer it finally hit me.
To Anna I was Mama first and foremost. I was the person who cared for her, loved on her, set boundaries for her and picked her up when she needed love. I was there, always, when she needed me and when I wasn’t I provided her with someone who would love her like their own and provide her with all the love she needed while I was working. My name was Mama, nothing else.
Tami loved her, cared for her, set boundaries for her and picked her up when she needed love. She was there and I knew Anna was in the best hands possible while her and I were apart. By calling her mama it didn’t mean she was confused she was just solidifying the fact that their relationship was solid and she was happy to be there.
All I wanted was Anna to be happy and in the best possible hands while I was working.
Today would be the first day back to work for me and it would be Anna’s first day back at Tami house. Since she didn’t start school until a week after I started work she would spend that week with the friends she grew up with, Tami’s Littles.
The friendships she had at Tami’s house were solid and I know that I was one blessed Mom to have such an amazing place to send my child while I was working. Anna was loved by many but with Tami it was different.
That bond was solid – I knew that, Tami knew that and most importantly Anna knew that.
Their relationship taught me so much about being a mom and how important it is to have other people in your child’s life that will be there for them. It showed me that I didn’t always have the answers ~ if Anna needed to go somewhere else for comfort that it was ok and didn’t mean that I was any less of a parent to her.
Anna had so many strong women in her life, Tami, her step mom, all 4 of her grandmothers, her aunts and all the wonderful friends that I have that would be their for her in a heartbeat. These women helped raise Anna to be the amazing little girl that she was at 6 years old and no words can begin to express how grateful I am for the influence they had on my daughter.
This morning I sat in prayer reflecting on how grateful I am that Anna and I found Tami. She was there for Anna and then for Abigail, providing love and guidance in all areas of their lives.
Thank you Tami for loving our girls as your own and for always being there for them.