Are you a mom?

Something struck me today that I never thought would. What makes me a mom? At what point did I become a mom? Does being a foster mom count??

My husband and I always said we wanted to adopt, even when we were just friends all those years ago, it was something we both wanted. So three years into marriage we decided it was time to explore it and decided fostering was the way to start. We went through the classes and the paperwork and after an unusually long process, we were licensed. We were so excited!

The first call we got was for respite of a little baby. I felt responsible for this baby but I didn’t feel like I could call myself a mom yet. The baby had a loving foster family and we were providing them with a weekend break. We were happy to do it but I wasn’t that baby’s mother. God had another plan. We then received a call that has since changed our lives.

It was for a teenager! We were scared, excited and not sure what to do with ourselves. The day he physically came into our lives is the day I felt like a mom. I wasn’t just responsible for him for a long weekend, I was responsible indefinitely.

When we picked him up they gave us medicine schedules, doctors appointments, therapy, sport schedules etc. We were responsible for him and giving him a happy childhood. It took time for our relationship to develop to where he was comfortable calling me mom to his friends and teachers but in my heart I felt like his mom right away. When I think about it, I always knew I was going to be a mom to someone in someway. I did not know God planned this child to be my son, whether temporary or permanent, but I am so glad he did.

Time has gone by, things have happened and now this child will legally be our son soon!! Someone said to me “Congratulations! Your going to be a mom!” It was such a nice thing to say, but it made me think. I have been considering myself his mom for months now, but maybe others haven’t?

So I started thinking, when a woman is expecting a child people say “Yay! Your going to be a mom!” I never thought twice about it until now. They aren’t going to be a mom, they are a mom! They immediately change their lives for that child; the way they shop, eat, sleep etc. You are a mom before you meet your biological child, why can’t foster moms be moms before they know the child that is going to enter their home? Why can’t adoptive moms be a mom before the adoption is legalized? We anticipate, prepare, cry and smile while waiting just like expecting women.

The thing is, they can and are! You are a mom from the second you receive that phone call about a child in need of a safe place to call home.  Who cares what others think. Being a mom is a hard job! It doesn’t matter if you are a mom to a child for one day, you are forever a mother because you took care of them when someone else couldn’t and they are forever in your heart.

God has a plan, we need be patient and show compassion. Every single woman that has ever had a baby, a foster placement, a kinship placement, adopted, or cared for a child as if they were their flesh, is a mom. The saying should be “Congratulations! You’re a mom!”