Every year, in May, we appreciate and honor our mothers.  Without them, we wouldn’t exist.  Yes, it does take two people to create a human.  But, the woman is the one, who has to go thru all the pain to make us happen.  I know that some of us, didn’t hit the jackpot with the one that God chose for us.  My mom always told me, “that she was the only mother I had, so deal with it.”  That makes it sound like she was horrible, which she wasn’t.

Actually, my mom, Mary Ruth Sternhagen, is an incredible person and my hero.  Over the years, she faced many challenges and didn’t let them define who she was.  She took everything in stride and did what she needed to do.   She was a great life teacher, who gave guidance without overstepping.  And supported us, when we needed it the most.  She showed the way to be a great parent, and I hope that I am half as good as she is.

As a young mother of four small boys, she and my dad, had to deal with my brother, Mark having polio at age 18 months.  Some how, she took care of my other 3 brothers, and gave Mark the daily physical therapy.  Then, when he was about 2 years old, my parents were told to bring him to the doctors in Omaha, NE.  Thinking that she was going to learn some new techniques for treatment.  That was not the case.  It was a special hospital to help Mark and they needed to leave him there.  So, they did just that, and drove away heartbroken, without their little boy.

Making the tough decisions for Mark, didn’t stop there.  When he was in the 3rd grade, for many reasons, they chose to send him to Sioux Falls to the Crippled Childrens’ School and Hospital.  Again, it could not have been easy, for anyone in the family.  But, I am sure mom, powered through and making it the best, that she possibly could.  It was what she did in her life, and that is how it needed to be lived.  

To make ends meet, she worked endless hours each week.  During the day, she ran their dry cleaners, and work at a local bar on nights and weekends.  In the late 1980’s, she and dad decided to start a bed and breakfast in an older house.  Not only, did they welcome guests, but they had a daily soup and sandwich bar.  From there, she started her successful catering business.  Everyone loves her food!

Now, here I am, running a bed and breakfast and taking care of my family.  I am so grateful for all that I have learn from her.  From the time I was small, I was watching her.  And I can’t help but think that she is the reason, I do what I do.  She always made her customers number one, and so do I.  She helps her family in any way possible.  So, no wonder, I would want to be at her side, when she is in the hospital.  

Basically, and most importantly, I love my mom.  Don’t forget to tell your mom, Happy Mother’s Day!