Next Gen: Mother’s Day

By Susanna Barbee | May 07, 2014

When I was a little girl, I wanted to grow up and be a pediatrician or a writer. Both of my parents were teachers, so I definitely didn’t want to be one of those. I wanted to be a mommy and have two little girls named Veronica and Madeline.

It’s funny how things change in 30 something years. I am not a doctor of any sort. I am a teacher and a writer.  I have two little boys instead of two little girls, and best of all, I am a mommy.

Being a mom is so many things wrapped up in one title. It’s laughter. It’s tears. It’s hard work. It’s worry. It’s fun. It’s exhausting. It’s exhilarating. It’s life changing. It’s everything.

My entire day is built around my boys. I get up super early in the morning to work so that I can be available to them as soon as they wake up. I work during nap time or late at night so that I don’t interfere with family time. When I’m working out of the home, I think about them and hope they’re having a good morning at preschool. Being a mom defines who I am as a person.

Yet, as Mother’s Day nears, I don’t think about honoring myself on this special holiday. I think first and foremost about my mom as if I’m still a little girl and not a mother in my own right.

When I think back on previous Mother’s Day Sundays, I envision cookouts or sitting outside eating brunch with my mom and the rest of our family. I think of writing heartfelt words in cards and trying my best to let her know how very much I appreciate all that she has done for me in my life. But really there is no way to tell a good mom how special she truly is.

My first Mother’s Day as a mom is a vivid memory. It was a beautiful and sunny day in 2009. I woke up excited to celebrate this special first with my almost four-month old little boy, Brooks. Daddy and Brooks gave me some gifts, and I let my boy sit in my lap as I opened everything.

Later that day, we went to my parents’ house for lunch.  We sat outside and ate corn on the cob, baked chicken, and fresh cantaloupe, among other things. My mom and dad gave me a necklace. The pendant was a square with a heart and the word “Mom” on it. I remember staring at it for a long time thinking, “Wow, I can’t believe I am a mom. That’s so weird.”

In reflecting upon all of this, I feel extraordinarily  blessed about the love I feel from being a mother and the love I feel toward my own mother. Even though I am a mom too, I think I will always think of my mother on this sweet day.

I hope my boys do the same. Whether they’re little boys up at dawn, teenagers sleeping in, college students living away , or married with children of their own, I hope when they awake each Mother’s Day, they think of me and that they know how very special I will forever feel when they call me “Mom.”

Susanna Barbee is a Waynesville mom, writer, and educator. Find more on her blog, Reach her at

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