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Mother's Day Messages: Am I a Mother?
by Cathy Coolin, Jaimie Marie's Mom
Each Mother's Day, I approach with a question in my mind - am I really a mother? I don't have a child living to show the world I am or to myself for that matter. What does it mean to be a mother? Someone who nurtures and cares for someone, loves unconditionally, wipes away tears and takes away hurt, encourages and teaches a child to grow and be a good person? Did I do any of that in Jaimie's short life?

Until now, the fourth Mother's Day since Jaimie's death in March of 1989, I always felt like I had not. But as I asked myself the question again this year, I thought about it a long time and I can say, yes, I did. Not all of it, but a lot of it.

Jaimie lived inside of me for 7 1/2 months during which time I nurtured her by eating all the right things, even things I hated and had to force down like all those green vegetables. I made sure I didn't drink alcohol and took vitamins. I talked to her and loved her inside my womb and also the three days she was in this world and held in my arms. I encouraged her with thoughts and love and plans for our lives during my pregnancy before I knew she wouldn't have the chance to live a full life and told her I loved her many times. At church when they said the Our Father, I always held my hand on my stomach so she was part of it too.

The three days she lived, I watched with pride through my tears at how much love my daughter gave to the people around her, how special and strong everyone thought she was, stroked her cheek and held her close very gently to make sure I wasn't causing her pain, smiled with joy over her head of dark hair and pretty little sweetheart mouth, felt her strong grip as her fingers encircled mine, grandpa was pretty impressed with that too. I have my treasured picture of Jaimie in my arms with my mom, dad, and sister all looking at Jaimie with love on our faces ~ Jaimie's one family picture. I also have that special warm feeling deep in my heart on her special days when I am sure she is letting me know she lvoes me. It is a feeling that only lasts a fleeting moment but enough to let me know.

Yes, I guess I can say I am a mother. A spcial kind of mother who has her child always in her heart and can look forward to seeing her again someday. Even though a lot of people don't know I am a mother, I know I am and that is what counts most of all.

In memory of Jaimie Marie Coolin
March 22 - 25, 1989
Trisomy 18

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