Though I’ve never had my own children, you are my children.
Though you didn’t come through me, you came to me.
Though you were all grown when you entered my life,
you still needed me as a child needs a mother.
And I needed you.
I fed you, and comforted you when you were scared.
I laid with you in kennels and on floors when you were sick.
We played with toys, and ran through the grass, splashed in the ocean,
took walks and long car rides,
flew on airplanes and visited far-away places together.
You are my constant companions.
I’ve never liked going away for long without you;
what mother wants to leave their children behind?
On vacations I count the days until we’ll be together again.
Each day at work, I count the hours.
We are inseparable.
I’ve watched you chase birds and squirrels,
lay with each other on cold winter nights,
bark at the mailman and gardener and any stranger who stepped within eyesight,
doing your job to protect me and our home from harm.
You are my guardian angels.
You lick away my tears when I am sad,
lay by my side when I am lonely.
You greet me each day when I come through the door,
with more happiness than any human being could ever muster.
You are my joy.
With some of you, I’ve had to make decisions on your behalf
that no mother should ever have to make for a child.
And with others, I watched you make that decision on your own.
I held you all as you took your last breaths, I watched your eyes go dark
and your souls leave this world.
I was your usher.
Though you are an animal and I am human,
I couldn’t love you any more if you were my own flesh and blood.
Your welfare is my primary concern,
your life is what I live to protect every day.
You are my world.
I am your mother.
And on this day and every day, I love you more than words can say.