Ok, I'm feeling a little emotional and mushy today. But, it's will good cause. Like most of you, I'm sure, I don't tell my parents NEAR enough how grateful I am to them or how much I love them.
Now, being a parent myself, I am at the beginnings of realizing how unselfish a parent's love is. Children don't realize what their parents go through or sacrifice for them until years later after they've grown up and mature a bit. My eye-opener was in my mid to late 20s but my appreciation and gratitude for my parents has grown each and every year since then as I realized more and more how very much they loved me and my sister. And how, at times, I disappointed them and broke their hearts. But they still loved me unconditionally and supported me.
I know that there will be "pay backs" because I put my parents through a rough few years. Oh yeah. I had my moments back then. But I always knew I'd be OK. And that was solely because my parents had provided me with a firm foundation and belief system. I had to stray for a little while but I found my way back and now I have such an appreciation and understanding of what my parents might have gone through. I pray that I don't have to go through the same hurt and turmoil with my boys as my parents did with me. But, if I do, I know that things will turn out right because my parents have instilled in me the sacrifice, morals, values and respect for others that I (hopefully) have and will roll down to my boys that will give them that firm foundation to bring them back to their parents if they have to stray away a bit, as well.
Thank you, mom & dad. I love you so much. I wish we lived closer so we could see each other more. But you are always in my heart and thoughts. I thank God every day for you and the loving parents you are.