Love Comes in Many Forms

What is love, “a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.” 

Love comes in many forms.

As a child, we think of the soft, tender love that sits amongst family. As an adolescent, we think of our rich friendships that are filled with late-night talks. As adults, we think of our romantic relationships that form foundations of growth, beauty, and struggle. 

The choice to love not found in common ties of biology is where I often land when thinking about love. 

I found pieces of myself in each person who has shown me love and understanding. 

The person that I think of most often holds the title Mom, Ann, also G’ma. She chose to love me as a tiny girl already carrying a mountain of heavy emotions. The title of Mom offered to her by choice. She decided to love me out of adversity. She opened her heart to a little girl and her brother when she already had four little humans sharing a piece of it. 

Without that love, I might have walked through this world with closed doors to many other relationships.

The deep love over homemade pizza on Friday night as I watch her in the kitchen making it from scratch. Her music knowledge discussed the difference between signing the chorus or verse of a Sheryl Crow song as I sat in the passenger seat of her van. Her work ethic as she helped build science invention convention protects after a long day of work. She made sure each birthday was unique with a homemade cake and homemade ice cream as each kid sat turning the handle of an old fashion wood ice cream maker.

She filled each holiday with long life traditions, smoking punch on Halloween, large Christmas day breakfast, Easter egg hunts in the back yard with prizes. 

The sacrifices she made to manage a household of six kids was clear. She made sure to introduce me as her daughter no need for any other subtitles or words to explain our relationship. 

She is the person I call when I am completely lost with what the world has thrown at me.

When I called to tell her, I was thinking about going to law school, and others said maybe you should be a paralegal.

She assured me that I didn’t need to settle for something less then. 

When our son was born and came home after his extended NICU stay, she was there cooking homemade sauces that I could reheat later after her flight home. She managed construction workers due to a leaking roof after a hard rain as I traveled back and forth to the hospital.

She told me I didn’t do anything wrong when I felt I had failed my son by his swift entrance into this world. 

She described honest feelings of mothering when I called, saying I didn’t know if I would make it through. Not responding with the token, everything will be ok response but real life, I have walked through mothering words and you will too. 

She rallied around me when we started down our autism journey and talked of numerous fights up against a broken school system.

Words of wisdom flew out of her mouth of all the people of the world who want to tell you who your child is not, not knowing who they actually are.

As I talked of the mountain of fears, she reassured me that I was strong and would find a way to give our son everything he needed. 

She jumped on a plane a second time when our daughter was born and sat with me as I struggled to manage a toddler and a new baby. As I fought off postpartum depression and mountains of worry about our son, she played in the leaves with our brown-haired baby boy as he was filled with overflowing emotions about his baby sister. 

She reached out with soft words to check-in if I was ok, as we walked through the diagnosis day a second time, knowing that maybe I wasn’t ready to pour my feelings out just yet. 

I have struggled through this life feeling that I was somehow not good enough to deserve the love from my biological ties.

I have not struggled with the idea that I am loved.

Her choice to love me with a profound tenderness of a mother, my Mom, has filled my heart with love. 

She has passed on so much to me that I carry over in the love I have for my children.

There is always a lasting, lifelong question of nature vs. nurture. I can tell you that nurture plays a huge part.

I can never thank her enough for her choice to love me. 

Written by, Tabitha Cabrera

Tabitha Cabrera, lives in Arizona with her husband, and two beautiful children. She works as an Attorney and enjoys spending her time in a public service role. The family loves nature and ventures outdoors as much possible. Come check out her little nature babies. She writes about their autism journey at peaceofautism.com, also on Facebook and Instagram.

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Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook, subscribe for exclusive videos, and subscribe to our newsletter.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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