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Mothers of the Heart

How many of you, like me, are mothers of the heart? We don’t have birth children, but we are nurturing special children in non-traditional ways.

For me, I have two children that came into my life in a poignant way. Their mother, a colleague and friend whom I met when I was a broker with Shearson Lehman Hutton, died of cancer at age 44, twenty years ago. Before she died, she asked me not only to be trustee of the money being left to Lea and her brother, Sean, but also to be Lea’s godmother—a special family role, particularly in French culture, which was this family’s ancestry. I was honored to be asked at the time, especially because, Jacqui, their mother, knew I was not able to get pregnant. Little did I know that this honor would grant me the most amazing, loving relationship with a child, soon teenager, and now young woman who just turned age 29.

Mother’s day, like this past Sunday, used to be a difficult day for me, before Lea came into my life. Now, having gone to all her special events, like soccer games and graduations, and traveling with her abroad, I have spent wonderful times with Lea and also with her brother. She and I have developed both a special mother-daughter relationship, and a friendship, as well.

Once she said to me with great affection, ‘we fill missing pieces in each other’s lives.’ What a blessing and gift came out of what I thought was my greatest lost dream. I am so grateful for the presence of both these children in my life. So, if you are fortunate enough to have birth children, never doubt that many women who are not mothers may not have chosen that for their lives—it chose them. And some of us are granted the incredible opportunity to mother children of our hearts. I hope all of them, and you, had a wonderful mother’s day.

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