With Mother’s Day coming up this Sunday, we decided to do a special Mother’s Day edition of Meet Your Neighbors. Henry County is full of awesome mommas, and this is just a sampling of all the wonderful women and mothers who call Henry County home. All of these moms have different stories, from being students, to teachers, to owning businesses and being stay-at-home moms. Some have one child, some have many, and some have adopted children in order to save them from bad situations. And one mom is even a surrogate, so she can bring the gift of parenthood to those who couldn’t do so themselves. Check out their stories*, and don’t forget to celebrate on Sunday with your loved ones!
Samantha Davis, Griffin, GA
Full-time student, applying for grad school for occupational therapy, professional photographer, also works part-time at a restaurant
To me, being a mom means putting all of your energy and love into raising a semi-decent human being. Not being too hard on yourself and remembering that someone is always watching and always looking up to you. It’s a learning experience and everyday there is something new!
My favorite “mommy moment” is when my son (3 years old) asks me to pick him up and hold him or to sing him his favorite lullaby. Three year olds are fiercely independent and most of the time I feel like I’m raising a teenager with his attitude but it’s little moments like asking for help that remind me that he still needs me.
My plans for Mother’s Day this year are picking up my own mother from the airport early Sunday morning and she will be staying with us for an entire week and I cannot be more excited! This is the first Mother’s Day we have spent together since I became a mother myself.
Ellen Marston, McDonough, GA
High school English teacher, Co-owner of Kismet Surrogacy, LLC
I am a mother to three amazing daughters, but as odd as it may sound, my favorite “mommy moment” is being able to help two other women celebrate Mother’s Day themselves. I am a two-time surrogate, and having the honor and privilege of carrying babies for two other families is one of the most amazing experiences I’ve had. People often ask me why I choose to be a surrogate. For me, the answer is simple. I adore my girls with all my heart, and to know that there are countless women and families out there who struggle with infertility is truly heartbreaking. I cannot imagine wanting something so desperately and not being able to have it. That’s why I became a surrogate.
The births of my own children are three of the best days of my life, but being a part of seeing a mother look at and hold her baby for the first time, knowing you helped make that happen, is simply indescribable. As much as I love to spend Mother’s Day with my own children and mother, knowing there are two women out there who now get to celebrate Mother’s Day themselves just fills me with a sense of peace and joy.
Shannon Oberst, Locust Grove, GA
Stay at home Mom
To me being a Mommy means fishing things out of the toilet, hugs and kisses and “I love yous.” Oh, and did I mention fishing things out of the toilet?!
I will be spending my Mother’s Day teaching Sunday School and enjoying a cookout by the pool with my family!
On sending a family photo: Because let’s face it! It is hard enough to get a picture of the kiddos, throw in the fact that momma and daddy have to get in, and it’s all over for this stay at home Momma!!!
Kristy Lynn Dubuisson Henry County, GA
As a mother to two sets of twins all under 3, being a mother means being tired and completely selfless. It also means being cranky and never by myself. I’m a nurse, a referee, a planner, a cook, a cleaner and the list goes on. Although this is true, it is the most rewarding job I’ve ever had and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Becoming a mother is by far my greatest accomplishment. If you’re a mother, you are Super Woman because our work is never finished!
My favorite mommy moment has to be when my twin boys first started walking. I took them to the restroom, and it was a single restroom inside the waiting area at the doctor’s office. It had one of those long door handles that automatically unlock the door as you turn it. Well, while I was using the restroom one of my boys opened the door for the entire waiting room to see me handling my business. It was super embarrassing then, but now I always look back and laugh!
Amanda Blanton, Stockbridge, GA
Auto Administrative Associate
I’m a wife and mother to a beautiful 6-year-old daughter named Brynna. Brynna is my absolute world and my mini me in more ways than one. She makes me laugh all the time.
Being a mom means so much to me, more than I ever thought it could. In July 2015, when Brynna was 4, she was diagnosed with Autism. My husband and I had to do a lot of research since we were new to this and basically rethink our entire parenting plan because our parenting road just took a big left turn. I didn’t want to let this diagnosis define her, and I wanted her life to be as normal as possible—and so far I think we’re doing a pretty good job. We have our version of normal, and sometimes things don’t go as planned and that’s ok. This journey has taught me so much and has made me see the world even better through my daughter’s eyes. Brynna has come so far in just under 2 years [since her diagnosis], and although I don’t know what the future holds, we take life one day at a time. We’re in it together, and I’ll always be there to hold her hand and support her. Being a mom means more than the world to me, it means so much that I can’t put it into the proper words.
I have so many favorite mommy moments that I can’t narrow them down to just one. I always feel so proud whenever Brynna reaches a goal in life, because those are so important and it makes me feel proud to know that our hard work with her and everything we do for her is paying off. I feel proud when someone compliments her on something because it is truly a reflection of me and her dad. It makes me proud when people just love Brynna for Brynna, and see past the autism.
Mother’s Day this year will probably be cooking out on the grill and enjoying the outdoors [weather permitting]. We don’t really plan anything big we just like spending time together and doing our own thing.
Bonnie Hise, McDonough, GA
Works part time, and is a stay-at-home Mom
My son is nearly five months old, and being his mother has shown me a special kind of love that I couldn’t imagine. To me, being a mother is my biggest joy and accomplishment in life. I treasure every moment with him.
My favorite mommy moment so far has been hearing his first giggle. Seeing the way his whole face lights up and that big baby smile pulls at my heart every single time!
This year for Mother’s Day, I plan to take little Charlie to the park and then go celebrate my own mother by making her dinner. I hope to be a mother to my son as my mother was to my brother and I.
These five short months have been the best of my life and I simply can’t wait to experience all motherhood has in store for me!
Kristi Pass, McDonough, GA
Former performance musician and music educator, now stay-at-home Mom
I am 37 years old, and have lived in McDonough for 9 years, having moved from the Seattle area when I married my husband, who is currently a lieutenant for the Rockdale County Sheriff’s department. We have five beautiful children—four boys and one girl. The oldest is 8 years old, and the youngest is nearly 8 weeks old. I homeschool the school aged ones and, as you can imagine, life is pretty busy and sometimes crazy!
I am a musician by profession, but I recently retired from teaching and do very little performing due to the demands of family life. Sometimes I feel a twinge of sadness at the thought of what I *can’t* do right now, but when I refocus my attention to what I *can* do, I know it’s worth it. From that amazing moment of seeing my baby for the first time (I’ve had 4 totally natural deliveries following one c-section) to the first smile, the first steps, the wonder over a butterfly, the first time they say, “I love you,” the first soccer game, the first time they read a book themselves, lots of cuddles, dandelion gifts, the magic of Christmas, the faith expressed in prayer, and so much more — motherhood is an awesome gift and I am blessed to be a mom!
Jessica Adams (recommended by Amber Pace), Henry County, GA
Co-owner, Bad Wolf Trucking
I am not writing this for me to be featured in your mother’s day article, but for my friend. Let me start by saying that I am not sure if she even knows how amazing she is, but she is truly amazing. Her name is Jessica Adams, and she has two handsome little boys and one beautiful little girl, whom she adopted.
She is so amazing because she was just living her life with her perfect family of four until one day she was faced with very sad news—she found out that a little girl was being raised in a home with a mother who was on drugs and [made other bad choices]. Well, Jessica decided she couldn’t let this little girl sit in that house for one more day, and she literally rescued this little girl from a not-so-great, and even dangerous, situation. With that being said, she is now a mother of three and has a full schedule with all three kids in sports, as well as helping her her husband running their own business.
I am so thankful that there are moms out in the world that have hearts like her, and she deserves the world for doing all that she does. So if you want an amazing mother with a tremendous heart to be featured in a mother’s day story…she would definitely be it for sure.
Stephanie Easterling, Hampton, GA
Seventh grade language arts and social studies teacher
Now that I am a mom it is everything to me. It’s who I am and what I do all the time. Even when I’m not with my children, I am always thinking of them. It’s the hardest thing I have ever done and the most fulfilling thing I’ve ever done. A smile, giggle, or hug from my children can change the worst of days into the best! Everything I do is a million times more worthwhile because of my children.
Everyone knows that when you become a mother your life will change but I don’t think anyone realizes what that really means until you actually are a mother. From the day you walk in through the door holding that baby, everything is different. You sleep different (less), you eat different (hiding so you don’t have to share), and most of all you love differently. I love my husband in a way that I can’t even begin to explain for what he has given me. This family he has helped me create and the home we’ve made together. I love my children with every ounce of my being. They are everything to me. I never considered myself a selfish person but my child have taught me what it means to be selfless and what love can really be.
Cheesy as it sounds, every moment with my children is cherished, even the ones I don’t recognize at the time. For example, when our family first moved to Georgia we were in a transition and didn’t want to settle in one place until we were certain about the move. For this reason, we chose a short lease in an apartment complex. It was small and we had no yard which was hard for my son to get used to. I’d take him outside to the grassy areas of the complex as often as I could but I could tell it wasn’t comparable to the large yard we had in South Carolina and it hurt my heart to see him so sad. One summer day it was raining, I mean pouring buckets, and my son was standing quietly on our covered patio watching it. I told him to come inside so we could get ready. Without another word we put on our shoes and ran outside. We played in the puddles and mud for over an hour. My husband came home and shook his head at the sight of us, all muddy and wet, but my son was in a state of complete bliss! I think for the first time since moving there he felt at home and you know what, so did I!
My husband makes me feel beautiful. My children make me feel beautiful. When I see myself through their eyes that is when I see myself at my best. I like that girl. She is lovely. I am lovely.
Amanda Siefken, McDonough, GA
Consumer Loan Processor, Atlanta Postal Credit Union
Being a mom means changing diapers, getting spit-up on, and loving another human being in a way you never thought was possible. My life has changed in obvious ways—I sleep less, I don’t get to eat or go to the bathroom when I want to, and leaving the house takes a near act of congress. My life has changed for the better though, too. I never knew that getting up in the middle of the night to a screaming baby would be so fulfilling. I never knew that I could love someone so much who is so demanding. It means getting snacks and drinks at a tiny human’s ever changing whim. It means figuring out which sippy cup is the correct sippy cup for that moment and knowing how to diffuse the situation if, God help you, you accidentally picked up the wrong one. It means getting all of the hugs and snuggles and answering all of the “what’s that?” questions. It means loving one person more than you ever thought your heart could love.
The best moment I’ve experienced so far was the moment they laid the baby on my chest, just seconds after he was born. He was laying there just screaming his head off until I said, “Hey baby, it’s okay,” and he paused. He stopped crying immediately and just stared at me. He knew who I was the second that I spoke to him. It was a wonderful moment—it was the moment I became a mom.
For Mother’s Day we are going to lunch at my husband’s grandmother’s house with all of his aunts, uncles, and cousins. Afterwards we’ll go to dinner with my mom. It’s a day filled with family celebrating all of the wonderful mothers in our families.
*Responses were edited for clarity.
“Meet Your Neighbors” is a new column that features someone noteworthy from the McDonough or Henry County community. If you know someone who you feel should be profiled, please email Abi at email@example.com.