In honor of my oldest daughter’s birthday earlier this month, I’d like to do a shout-out to all the moms out there.  The title of “Mom” is both common and unique at the same time.  Caring moms are all over the planet, but each one is the most important person mom in the world to their children.

Now that I’ve been on both sides of the Mom coin, I can appreciate this so much better.  I mean really, who else would put up with someone throwing up on her shoulders every day?  And I’m virtually certain there must be a bank of “sleep Mommy never got” up in heaven, so I’m counting on some nice long naps after I leave this earth.  Moms put up with a lot, but the rewards they get – a toothless smile, a loving hug, a “thanks” – are priceless.

Those special coos and soothing little mommy sounds – they are a lullaby for babies and little children.  Mommies are walking comfort blankets.  When moms and their children develop a bond, nobody quite measures up to Mommy.

Thankfully, this essential bonding doesn’t just happen between biological mothers and their babies.  Adoptive moms, grandmothers, or other special caretakers may become the mommy for a child.  Just giving birth doesn’t automatically make you a mommy. Being the woman a child counts on for security, acceptance, love, affection, help, safety, and learning – that’s how kids know who their mommy is.

A good mother-child relationship is built on warmth and being around each other a lot.  Typically, moms do hands-on nurturing like kissing boo-boos, fixing hair, making favorite foods, changing diapers, being a lounge chair for a child who’s sick, being with a child during the night shift over and over.  Moms develop their bonding relationship with their children through these activities.  I can recall many occasions where my mother did that with me, and that I have done with my three girls.  It’s those little things that add up to the whole relationship.

When you feel you need that one person who knows you best, accepts you, understands what makes you feel better, that’s when no one but mom will do.  Moms, you keep doing what you’re doing each and every day.  Those little things count for so much.  And even when your kids are driving you crazy and you wish you could ship them to the moon, just one soft kiss on your cheek or unexpected hug magically turns it all around.