I’ve watched Amber raise these children for seven years now—Ike with his missing teeth and love for all things wild; Jude with his dietary complexities and gentle barbarianism; Ian with his stocking cap, backpack, and his zeal for comedic fashion; Titus, the baby with the perpetual smile. It wouldn’t be honest to say that it’s been a walk in the park, all grace and peace, all sugar cookies and singalongs. I know the truth. Some days are filled with white-knuckled prayer after white-knuckled prayer. Once, Amber was a graduate student in a prestigious Fine Arts program. She wrote strong poetry, the kind that made other poets want to wield better words. She’d never tell you that. She’s quiet that way. But I remember the day she decided to leave the program. She didn’t want to lose our children to poetry, she said. Looking back now, I know that was a difficult decision. But Amber is a faithful woman and she never looked back.
She creates and curates a different kind of art these days. The living poems, they sneak handfuls of chocolate from the candy jar, count the ripples from the rocks thrown into the fish pond, or beg for one more night-time verse of "Trust and Obey"—for there’s no other way. All the while Amber pours life into them and calls them beautiful art--the very best of her creations--and she treasures them in her heart.
Today, we have the privilege of honoring mothers from all walks of life. What started as a simple project to encourage Amber three years ago, has turned into something quite amazing.