One of the greatest blessings in life is to be a mother or to have had the privilege of helping raise a child that was not your own by birth. I recently received a card from a dear friend who has adopted children over the years as she worked in the mission field and has a variety of children in her home from Haiti, Tajikistan and Russia. Linda had never been able to have her own children but has become a mother to many through the years of ministry. She has filled that void in a child's life and her own.

We do not retire as mothers even when our children are grown and they are mothers. The mother instinct does not leave even if the children live miles away and we only see them occasionally.

My daughter was looking at Mother's Day cards and said all of a sudden it hit her that this year she could not buy one for grandma, who was also her godmother. She found herself in tears at the card shop.

This will be my first Mother's Day without a mother and I have many friends who are experiencing the same hurt. There is a special reserved place in my heart that has what I call a "mommy hole." This hole is very tender, but as the days go by it is filled in with more and more good memories and does not bleed as often. It will always be there. Remembering things about Mom brings joy to my heart, but it also spills my tears.

There is a beautiful song written by a woman I met in Charleston. Her name is Bobby Jean Whittington. She gave me a copy of her CD and it is called, "Sometimes A Mom Needs a Mama, Too."

It tells how daughters grow up and become moms, but as they raise their children there are days that they need a mom too, "Someone to pull me through. Someone to rock and kiss my fears away. Someone to hold me tight, hear my heart at night, sometimes a mom needs a mama, too."

I can't help but thank God for the mom he gave me. I know I was blessed to have had her for 97 healthy years. I will always miss her. Sometimes a grandma needs a mama, too.

I am not always called grandma. Our two-year-old granddaughter calls Jim and me, "papa." We are both "papa" and we respond as such. For her, grandparents do not have a gender, they just are. I love being called Papa. I haven't seen a card "for Papa" on Mother's Day. It really doesn't matter; I will get a Papa's Day hug and kiss and so will grandpa.

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