One of the hardest parts of moving for each time has been leaving the people I have come to know. One of them has been on my mind a lot since this summer.

She is a mother I really admire and when I think of how to be a good mom and what decisions to make, I instantly think “what would Kathryn do?”

She was the first person I met in the last place I lived; I met her at church. She left several messages for me so she could stop by and visit, knowing I was new and probably could use a friendly hello. My schedule at work kept me late or caused me to travel, so I wasn’t making it easy for her charitable heart to get to my front door.

We finally connected and she brought me a nice little holiday baggie of chocolates and the warmest, most welcoming smile I could ever ask for. She was also the first, besides family and close friends, to hear our news of expecting our first child. Her genuine excitement for us made me know we would do just fine in our new town.

Soon she was nurturing her newborn, the third addition to her family. Although our paths did not cross socially for several months to come, I knew she was someone I wanted to know better. I would watch her from afar, aware of her sweet spirit, and see how tender she would be with her family.
Then I eventually had my baby. She brought be the biggest, healthiest meals I have ever had. My mom was visiting at the time and to this day comments on how fresh the fruit was. It was that first week of motherhood I was battling Baby Blues and sleep deprivation, just really feeling like I wasn't cut out to be a mom. The only thing she said when she handed me that meal and smiled at Zane was "oh I love babies; they are just fresh from heaven!" It whipped my mind into gear and made me realize I was able to handle this. That motherhood is a blessing, albeit hard at times, the greatest gift I will ever be given in my lifetime. Her little comment changed my attitude and the next diaper was changed with a lot less groveling. I no longer imagined myself throwing books at Mike's head as I nursed my son next to the bookshelf every hour of the night.

I will always remember a brief conversation we had about teaching little boys reverence at a young age and it made quite an impression on me. While I was struggling with how to manage a pre-nursery age child during church, she calmly shared with me her success story of how she learned on her mission to always pray before leaving her home. The habit stayed with her into adulthood and parenthood. This example is what led her to watching her toddler kneel by himself before going out to play, her example was rubbing off nicely.

She was always up for a ladies night out, acknowledging the importance of mommy break time. She fulfilled her church callings with duty and love, never complaining. I knew I could confide in her with some stressful concerns that crossed my mind from time to time, knowing I could trust her and received her honest opinion. A mutual friend and I once talked of how she always gives to others without ever expecting anything in return.
She is the type of person that truly gets even more beautiful the closer you get to her. I miss seeing her first hand at how great she is at juggling life and a large family with her love of our Heavenly Father always first in mind.

Kathryn, you make me less scared to have more children. Happy Valentine’s Day! Thank you for being a great example of motherhood to me.