In Celebration of Moms
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05/13/10 | The Women's Conference | 60 Comments

The Women's Conference Celebrates Moms

Maria Shriver on the profound power of motherhood and her own experience of being both a mother and a daughter.


We invited you to share your own personal stories about motherhood -- what your mom means to you or what it means to be a mom. The winners receive --

We've chosen the 3 winning comments. They are --

Kristy Campbell:

I’ve never felt as powerful as a mother as when I was 8 months pregnant sitting outside of the drug-testing lab with my teenage daughter. I had suspected something was going on with her and was adamant about finding out exactly what. As she screamed at me in the car about how much she hated me, I heard a voice come out of me that said… “Fine. Hate me. You'll hate me when you are 20, you'll hate me when you are 30, and you may hate me for the rest of your life. But, at least you will have a life from which to hate me. I am your mother. I am not your friend. And if you are doing drugs, I’m going to find out and deal with it.”

Our story has a drug-free happy ending and now 2 years later, my daughter is off to college and we are starting to evolve the mom/daughter relationship into a friendship. I love and value the current relationship I have with her, however, I know that if I hadn’t been a mother first to her, we would never be on this path to friendship.


I Love all the wonderful stories of 'Mommie and me,' by people who had warm milk by their bedsides and a fairytale told to them until their eye's were sealed with a loving kiss from Mom. At one time i couldn't stand to hear them. Mothers day was such a difficult time. It use to be, "Bah Hum-bug", on mothers day.

Mothers Day has always been a day of feeling guilty for giving Mom cards that didn't bare an ounce of truth of who we were. If i hadn't had such a great relationship with my own son, the yearly greiving over the relationship i never had with my Mom and achingly longed for, would have been unbearable. Yet as i go and grow through life i become more understanding of Mom's hurt and pain of never being loved by her own Mom. The suicide of my Dad, the loss of my oldest son, didn't help either one of us at all. But, when i tell you how much strength, courage, and love has risen in the midst of this family. Once i decided this generational abusive behavior would stop with me, It did. I was a single parent and my son who is now in law enforcement with a beautiful family. I was determined he would know without a doubt, he is loved. Now, i'm very passionate about leading others to a place of a 'Loving Reality'. I Love my Mom very much and now i know, she couldn't give what she never had.

Have a blessed Mother's Day and know, Love never fails.
May 2010


I and even more so my sisters are now my mother's mother. As my mother of 8 children in 10 years having just celebrated her 89th birthday is suffering from the early stages of alzheimers disease and her daughters have stepped up to care for her as she spent many years caring for us. I think how ironic this care is as we bath our mother in the same blue cast iron tub she use to bath us....was her hair as she use to wash ours, dress her as she use to dress us and feed her as she to feed us. But the one thing she still does for herself is to apply her make-up. Growing up I will always remember how mom taught us how to use make-up and to never leave the house without lipstick....needless to say my sisters and I always look fabulous when we leave our homes. 

Care for our parents comes full cycle. Many questions why we would do this instead of just putting mom in a 'home', but the choice my sisters and I have made is to care for mom as long as possible even as we care for our own families and self. Mom made room for us as we grew and now we are making room for mom. Happy Mothers!

Explore the rest of the inspiring motherhood comments below:

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  • My Mother died when I was 16. She was 44. She died of breast cancer. Her death was very fast. Not a day goes by that I don't think of her. Her life shaped me and her death has changed me as much.

    I am a single parent to a two year daughter. She is my heart and soul. I am now 44. I have recently been diagnosed with breast cancer myself. It has been very difficult, especially because I am the same age my mother was and I have the same thing.

    It has made me think so much about my Mother must have felt. She lived for her children and the thought of leaving them must have been so horrible. I know because I often think of it myself. If I die of this will my daughter even remember me? Will she know how much love I have for her? Will her sadness at the loss keep her from enjoying her life?

    A Mother's love is the greatest love there is. I feel my Mother's love everyday even though she is no longer with me.

    Posted by shadow2356, 8 May 2010.

  • Life is complicated. My mom has Multiple Scloisis,Diabetes,heart problems, hearing problems,seeing and what ever comes next. My mom is dealing with almost every illness and is still fighting for life . She has always been sick,but she had a life before MS. She is caring, giving, kind, and very wise. She has her faults,but life wasn't fair to her. She is more than her illness; she's a person with many talents. She is a trained commercial artist through Job Corps. She is a very gifted artist by nature,and she made her first painting(yes a Real painting) at an early age. She is a very talented singer; she was told when she was young she could have been an Opra singer ,but her dad wouldn't let her. She has been everything to me and my dad. She is very spiritual ;she had a close shave with death when she had her ear surgery . She is living because God has a reason for her to. She is my mom and I love her. My mom is Marsha Calkins and she is alive and that matters to me. Christine Calkins

    Posted by redwoodangel, 8 May 2010.

  • Hi!

    Posted by redwoodangel, 8 May 2010.

  • My mom died when I was 17 but I am constantly amazed at all she taught me in that brief time.

    How to use a sewing machine and make a dress from a pattern.

    How to cook and bake.

    How to entertain guests lovingly in your home.

    How to treat a man.

    How to live on a budget.

    How to serve others and God.

    My simple memories of her include things like:

    Listening to her sing the hymn "Love Divine, all loves excelling" while working in the kitchen.

    The smell of her toilet water cologne as she kissed me goodbye when she was going out for the evening with my Dad.

    Reading me bedtime stories from my favorite books.

    Her love and care for the elderly....a senior citizen who lived next door as well as her parents and her mother in law.

    Eating leftover pie crust with her that she'd baked with cinnamon sugar on it after making an extraordinary pie.

    Giving me bed baths when I had the chicken pox and measles. She had been a nurse before she had children and knew how to give a great bed bath.

    Telling me when I was about 15 that I should consider working with people...that I had a gift for it.

    Living with the crippling pain of Rheumatoid Arthritis without complaining. She continued to care for her family and others as long as she was able.

    Most of all she taught me how to love by loving me.

    Now I take what she gave me and have passed it on to my children. Yesterday I became a grandmother for the first time. My oldest child and his wife went through training and a sibling group of two children, a girl, 4 and a boy, 16 months have been placed with them for adoption. What a privilege for me to now show love to grandchildren who desperately need it.

    Her legacy continues and I am so blessed to carry it on. "Thanks, Mom."

    Posted by sherylsplace, 8 May 2010.

  • When I found out I was pregnant for the first time at the age of thirty-one, for a moment as brief as a butterflies' touch, I thought about not having my child. In the next millisecond, I vowed to take care of my child from that moment on. When I made the decision to raise my child, it was with all my heart and soul. No one would keep me from providing him all the Love that he deserved. He was my child, my blessing, my responsibility. I have taken the role of Mother seriously and have exposed him to everything that is creative and life expanding. When he was a teenager I saved enough money to send him to Europe so that he could experience life outside of our neighborhood. Now as a working college student he is preparing to leave my world. It has been the Two Musketeers and now we look forward to the changes that will come for us both in the future. I will bless him on his new journey and pray that he may continue to explore all his possibilites wherever he may go. I love you Skylar with all my heart. God Bless you always.

    Posted by janie50, 8 May 2010.

  • Yeah, I know, it's a bit early. But Happy Mother's Day.

    I would like to send a special shout-out to a mother besides my own. My grandmother.

    She's suffering the late stages of Alzheimer's and diabetes. To put it lightly, these diseases fucking suck.

    I know she'll never read this.

    She wouldn't remember it even if she did.

    It's been heart-breaking, watching her mind and body slowly break down.

    But if you look really close in her eyes, you can see she's still in there; somewhere. The sickness has taken everything else from her. And it hurts to see.

    So, I'm just going to remember the good times, when I was younger, and she was still Mary.

    One last thing, tell your Mom you love her tomorrow. And if you can't tell your mom, tell someone that you love them. You might not get the chance next year.

    Posted by jmatthew, 8 May 2010.

  • We all have a story. To write mine in 200 words would be impossible. The conclusion to mine is simply this: Motherhood is by far the toughest, yet most rewarding ‘career’ ever! It takes patience, endurance, time, money, faith and most of all, unconditional love. I am a career focused individual-healthcare technology. However, this past year of hardships and overcoming obstacles has taught me more about myself, my children and the relevance of the roles we each have in our family unit than all of my 15+ year ‘career’ in healthcare technology combined. I believe we are always students of life and time provides us the passages we need to recognize our strengths, our weaknesses and what’s most important. My daughter who is 15, and my son who is 3, both look to me as their provider, problem solver, nurturer, driver, teacher, mom and dad; and let me be so bold to say next to Jesus, their hero. What they don’t realize yet, is truly, they are my inspiration, my reason for living, my teachers; my heroes. Unconditional love is one of those things inexplicable; it is not found in a dictionary and something no one can ever take away!

    Posted by Devine Authenticity, 8 May 2010.

  • Being a mother means taking on the lifelong responsibility, overwhelming joy and occasional heartache of raising a human being. Think about it. Being a mother is a monumental task that requires no training, just instinct. This can be overwhelming at times, but mostly it is amazing in its simplicity. Accepting who your child is, from temperament to physical characteristics and more, is the best gift that you can give your child. In return, you know that there is a person on this planet who loves you more than anything and this is a larger gift. There are moments when you may see yourself in something that your child says or does, and you smile to yourself. There are times when your child does something truly wonderful and you wonder how you helped to create this person that you are so proud of. There are also times when being a mother is demanding, exhausting and just plain hard. These are the true moments when being a mother means reaching deep within yourself to give when there is not much left to be given. These experiences (good, bad and even ordinary) tell you that you matter to your child. This is priceless.

    Posted by mimi s, 8 May 2010.

  • I was traveling with my son when he was in his 20's and we had an argument. He decided to leave me stranded in Prague and go off and travel on his own. I made him sit and talk to me on the Charles Bridge before he left and he told me that he didn't need a friend, he needed a mother.

    I was shocked at his statement because I thought I had always been his mother, but at some point, I decided I wanted him for a friend. That moment on the Charles Bridge sent me into a serious journey to find out what true mothering really meant. My own mother was too busy taking care of my dying sister for 16 years to be my mother, so I had no model.

    Then I met Dottie, a total stranger, who adopted me when my mother got Alzheimer's. Dottie didn't tell me what a mother is or does. Dottie showed me how listening, giving unconditional love, and not judging, gave me a deep sense of security and the love I had longed for all my life.

    It may have taken 60 years to learn how to be a mother, but I don't regret that I wasn't the best mother in the world. Being a mother supports my humanness and being in the world with all of God's children.

    Fortunately, my son didn't leave me stranded on the Charles Bridge in Prague. And for some strange reason, he's now my best friend. Go figure.

    P.S. The URL I listed belongs to my son.

    Posted by Jean Wells, 7 May 2010.

  • I think all mother's are special but I would like to tell about my mother. At 31yrs. -just 3 weeks after having my brother [ I was 4 and my sister was 5 yrs.] my mother was told that she only 6 months to live due to the fact that the infected milk gland her doctor thought her lump was had actually turned out to be breast cancer and it had spread. This was at a time when the only treatment was cobalt treatments. They did not have chemo yet. My mother was told to give us away and many people did help take care of us and it was not a happy time. My mother made a decision that she was not going to die until her children were grown and could take care of themselves. She went to church and prayed that if God would allow her to live she would in return promise to go to church and thank him everyday of her life. She kept her promise and when she was too sick a priest would come to our house. She never prayed that the cancer would be taken away. This could be mind over body or a miracle from God but she actually lived for 23 more years. During those years she always had cancer in different parts of her body but even though she had to go through all the hospital stays and pain she was always there for us. She was the person who would wrap her arms around you and all your problems would just melt away because of her love. She never put herself first. Her family came first. She even went to work to help our father pay some of her hospital bills. The last 4 yrs. of her life she had chemo every week. It was not an easy life to be sick a few day of the week for 4 yrs. Even through all of this she still sat and listened to us cry about our problems and loved our problems away. She never put her cancer first nor did she let cancer take over her. She put on parties, she sang, she danced, and she laughed. I am now 54 yrs. the same age my mother was went she passed away and I wish that I was the mother she was. Her strength was incredible.

    Posted by susan gullotta, 7 May 2010.