I have wanted to write my memoirs for a while now as a way of writing about the women who have impacted my life and helped shape me into the woman I am today.  I don’t think I will be sitting down anytime soon to embark on the complete endeavor of formulating a book; however, I want to shape a portion of my blog into something a little more consistent. I want to honor real women, present and past, in my life through my words, through this blog.  And so today as you read my first story (of many to come) of a woman of impact we will honor her together.
My encounter with a woman of impact this past week: Gina
This past week I went hiking with a friend, who is a single mom, and her son.  I am just starting to get to know this friend; she is relatively new in my life.  I don’t know the details of her story; but, I do know she is a committed mom who loves her son.  As we were hiking I began to see more glimpses into her life. 
As mother myself now I appreciate when Ryan comes on board to be “fun-dad” to our daughter when I am tired and don’t have any conversation or smiles left for her.  I appreciate when Ryan is there so I can pop out for half an hour or an evening and our daughter is in good hands.  I appreciate that Ryan is there to verbally and physically share the struggles and stresses of parenting.  I appreciate that I have a partner in parenting.
My friend does not have these luxuries.  She has to be “fun-mom”.  She has to be ruling setting mom.  She has to be a provider.  She has to be care-giver.  She has to be present.  Always.  I mean she has assistance in some people, but for the most part day in day out she has to be there: to calm her son into sleep, to play with him so he can burn off steam, to talk to him so he can voice his dreams of what he wants to be when he grows up, to put food on the table to nourish him, and so many other things that I don’t even know about parenting yet since my child is not yet so grown.  She has no co-pilot in parenting. 
I said to her: “you must have lots of energy and patience.”  She replied, “I pretty much am exhausted all the time; but you get used to it.”
My words are inadequate to describe the impact this woman has on a daily basis.  She is impacting her son’s life.  She is so committed to her son.  She loves him so much.  She has to work so hard to be mom to him.  You can see she is doing everything she can, the best that she can, to be the best mom she can to him.  Daily she gives so much, fighting exhaustion, to give him the best. She is giving her all, so he can have the best of this life.  I can only imagine she feels like she turns up short as she tries to fill 2 roles.  And while she alone cannot replace the constant daily presence of Dad in her son’s life, she is indeed a mom and a half to her son, doing a wonderful job! 
She is also impacting my life.  I mentioned that I don’t know this friend that well yet.  This is true.  However, I admire this woman and I admire the mom that she is.  She is humble, hard-working, doesn’t complain, and has a faith rooted in God.  I am glad to have her as a friend and truly believe that as our relationship grows, so will my admiration for her.  This woman of impact is doing an incredible job at navigating this challenging life and with whatever credibility I have, I say “Well Done!”  Thank you for the positive impact you are having on my life.