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A Mother’s Love Inspires—Changing the Ordinary to Extraordinary

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My mom’s life here ended from a nine-month battle with melanoma cancer on October, 29th 2004 just after three in the afternoon. She took her last breath with her two sons close by her side and in the arms of her husband whom she loved and was married to for over 32 years.


Above any other professional achievement in her life, she considered herself proud to be our mom. She was an elementary school teacher for over 25 years and made the classroom a fun and memorable place for her students. As an advocate for children’s literacy, the California Reading Association gave her The Margaret Lynch Award, one of their highest honors. Her love for reading and her understanding of its importance developed while she read to her blind father.

My brother and I agree that although she was not perfect, she loved each of us intently and unselfishly. Her impact on us is evident, especially now that she’s gone. What we miss most about her, is the experience of her. Her phone call, her smile, her word of encouragement, her note of concern, her hug, her laugh, her voice, her look of pride, her tear of joy, her birthday cakes, her “I’m sorry for,,,”, her home cooked meals, her “Remember when’s…” and her “I love you’s.” For us, we remember the ordinary things as extraordinary.

~ Handwritten note from my mom in 1999 after I graduated from college ~


Being your parent hasn’t always been easy and I’m sure I’ve said and done things that have hurt or confused you. But no one has ever made me as satisfied as you do by being happy! No one’s smile has ever warmed my heart with delight as quickly as yours can. No one’s hugs feel as sweet and kisses so kind.

The good times have become precious memories for me and I remember often. Your first step, the bus when it came by for kindergarten, the Halloween costumes I made for you, your teacher’s comments of how special you were, your first BB gun and scooter, your skateboard ramp, your basketball games, your youth.

You have brought pure joy. I am grateful for the closeness you had with me, staying up late hearing you share all your dreams.

You are a part of me! And no matter what happened in the past or what the future holds you are someone I will always accept, appreciate, forgive, adore and love unconditionally. I’m not perfect, but I am here for you…not to judge you but to accept you.

No matter what you are going through, no matter what we need to do for you, always remember that you have a family that loves you and you will always be welcomed home!

My dreams for your life might not always be the same as yours, but I want to be there and support you all the way. I would truly give my life for you and I’m so proud.




Josh Unfried is the founder of Mom Faves online community. is the mom word-of-mouth network™ that reveals what moms love most. Moms join MomFaves to submit, vote, share, promote and discuss mom-valued products, websites, charities, recipes, places, services, activities, remedies, events, news, entertainment, programs, photos and more.

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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