I never tried to replace their mom, rather I helped pick out cards and gifts for her birthday, Christmas, Valentines Day, and Mother's Day. I helped them create handmade gifts for her that would be meaningful, and always enforced the fact that I was not trying to replace Mom.
I'm usually a humble person, rarely calling any attention to myself, or asking for anything. I'm like that for just about anything. However, my husband has been very good at acknowledging what I do for him and the boys. He's taken me out for Mother's Day meals, and had the boys give me cards thanking me for what I do. I feel that the love I have for my stepsons are no different than a mom who adopted her children. I may not have carried or given birth to them, but I love them as if they were my very own.
But no matter what, it's still a day I dread and wish I could avoid. I've always tried to push back any jealous feelings that may creep up during these times.
I always end up with a lump in my throat and an ache in my heart when I know Mother's Day is coming. But I still have my mom and mother-in-law who I love very much, and want to make sure they are recognized and appreciated. So for them I stay strong, swallow that lump in my throat, and keep moving forward.
So for all the moms, stepmoms, mother-in-laws, grandmothers, aunts-as-moms, dads-as-moms, mentors, and everyone in between, I hope you all have a special day and are appreciated for what you do for your children.