This One's for You, TOO, Mama
Because you brought my little sister, who became my bestest friend, into this world a coupla years after that, despite doctors' claims that she'd be deformed or mentally challenged or otherwise Other, and refused to have an abortion;
Because, at the age of 38, you decided to take your life in your own hands, divorce the man who was no longer a good husband, and get your very first job outside of the home EVER, so you could take care of us financially;
Because you shouldered the responsibility of us all, despite your weariness and frustration and (according to you) rank ignorance about parenting;
Because, when we told you we were taking Sex Education classes at school, you IMMEDIATELY sat us down and told us The Real Deal, despite the fact that YOU had had to learn the facts about your body and The Birds and The Bees from a girlfriend (because neither your mother nor your grandmother would tell you);
Because you decided to behave in a deliberate, loving way toward your grandchildren, despite the fact that your own mother had never taught you how to be a woman, much less a grandmother;
Because, every year, you forget that you sent me a "Pull Your Life Together" letter last year, so you send it again, writing out three or four pages by hand, tucking them into an envelope, and mailing it;
Because at the age of 75, you still worry about all your grown children and pray for every one of us --and our children, blood and adopted;
Merry Father's Day. I love you and I hope you live forever.
Dear Jesus, my brother, thank you for fathers of each gender.