Hysterectomy at Thirty: Best Thing Ever?

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a mom.  I always dreamed of long road trips in an RV with my husband and gaggle of kids (five kids, to be exact) while I homeschooled and traveled the country with my family.  It turned out, God had a different plan for me when at the age of thirty, I ended up having a hysterectomy due to complications with severe endometriosis.  Still single, with no biological children, I spent the next few years praying and trying to figure out God's plan for me.  I knew I was going to be a mother.  I just had no idea how it was going to happen.

In the fall of 2008, I decided to take a leap of faith and become a foster parent.  I had always shied away from foster care because of the usual fears related to having to say goodbye to children who I loved as my own, but as time went on I finally began to trust that God wouldn't have planted this seed in my heart only to leave me hurting and devastated.  I began to trust that He would heal me through the hurt as I loved my children and let them go.  So I dove headfirst into the crazy, unpredictable world of foster care, and allowed myself to love my kids with my whole heart despite the inevitable hurt.

I got my very first placement in April of 2009.  A sweet baby girl with a broken femur...  I called her my "Immobile Munchkin."  I remember being so excited because I was going to officially be a mother on Mother's Day for the first time.  Unfortunately, I only had Munchkin for a week, and I once again spent Mother's Day as a daughter.

The week after that first Mother's Day, my little Booger Bear came to live with me.  He had a two-toothed little smile that made my heart melt, and that little baby had me hooked from the moment he crossed through my front door.  That same year, Booger Bear's 16-year-old birth mom, Angel, came to live with us as well.  I went from "Childless Single Lady with a Cat" to "Single Foster Mom of a Teenager and an Infant" practically overnight!  2009 was a whirlwind of "mom" duties.  Appointments, parent-teacher nights, milestones, and "firsts..."  I quickly learned that the best sounds in the world are your baby's laughter and the little "I yuh you's."  I learned that hearing the word "Mom" makes your heart smile.  I learned that baby hugs and kisses and "cuddle time" with your little boy could make a bad day turn around in an instant.  In the year those kids were with me, I learned what it meant to be a mom.

The kids left in early 2010.  Angel to another foster home in early January and Booger to his daddy in March...  Mother's Day that year was the most difficult yet.  I had been a mother for a year, but once again I was alone.  I had quite a little pity party.  I wallowed...  I cried...  I wrote about it on the blog...  I had myself a good case of the "woe is me's," and then I did my best to get over it and move on.  I received my very first Mother's Day card that year from a dear friend and co-worker.  With that card, she reminded me that I was, indeed, still a mother.  I might not be able to be with my kids on that special day, but those kids made me a "mom" the second they came through my door.

2010 proved to be a year of huge changes.  It brought me two more little ones when Little Miss and Itty Bitty came and then left my home.  It brought Booger Bear back into my life late that year, and it brought me, Heaven...  Booger Bear's stepmom, who at the age of 17, gave up everything in order to pick up where I left off as Booger's mama.  Over the next several months, I was blessed to have these kids become a huge part of my life and my family.  In February 2011, I was blessed with my honorary "granddaughter" when Booger's baby sister was born.

Mother's Day 2011, I had just gotten home after having lunch with my mom when I heard a knock at my door.  What I saw when I opened the door made me want to cry buckets of "happy tears."  My kids...  Booger, Heaven, Banana, and Booger's daddy all standing there with Mother's Day gifts that Booger had picked out himself and insisted that "his Tammy" desperately had to have.  My very first Mother's Day gift consisted of a balloon, a corsage, a bell, funny pens with animals on them, and picture frames that Booger had painted himself with photos of the kids.  I don't know if I can ever explain just how much it meant to me to have my kids show up at my front door on that special day, but Mother's Day 2011 was the first year that I truly felt like a "mother."  And just when I thought I couldn't possibly get any happier, my little Chunky Monkey came into my life two days later.  :-)

It's not every day that you hear a woman say, "Having a hysterectomy at the age of thirty was the best thing that ever happened to me!"  But for me, it is the absolute truth.  This Mother's Day, I will be hanging out with my honorary daughter and granddaughter.  I will be loving on my Booger Bear and smothering him with cuddles.  I will be rocking my little Monkey to sleep.  This Mother's Day, as I lay my head down on my pillow and drift off to sleep, I will be thanking God for making my dream of being a mother come true.

Tammy is a single lady with an obnoxious cat, daughter, sister, friend, cool Aunt Tammy, honorary "mom", honorary "grandma." Bio mom to none, but full-time working foster mom (aka. "Mimi") to six kiddos and counting over the past 3 1/2 years.  Accounts Payable Coordinator by day (meaning Tammy pays bills in order to eat), aspiring author by night (meaning Tammy wants to earn enough money to eat through witty status updates and blog posts alone)...  Tammy blogs about her Foster/Adopt Journey at "I Must Be Trippin'".