Colleen and Edna: Saints of My Family

The Next Family

By: Don Todd

I know when most people look back on what their mother has done for them they think their mother is a saint. I am no different.

When I was in school, I was the victim of bullying. It was a very rough time for my family. My mother was the one person who held us together and pulled us all through.

We are a stronger family unit because of all she has done for my brothers and me. She was the best ally to have when I came out. Now she is teaching me how to be the best parent I can be for Grace.

“Selfless” is the word to best describe Colleen. She dropped everything and quit her job to take care of her mother who had had a stroke that took us all by surprise. She spent a month and a half caring for my grandmother until she passed away. Not long after, she moved in with my aunt to help care for her brother-in-law when he was at the end of his life with a brain tumor.

These days she spends at least five days a week with my Gracie, teaching her everything she knows, and I feel that Grace will be a better person for it. Often people see my mom with Grace and mistake her for her daughter. Mom has to inform them that it is her granddaughter. There is definitely no question that the two are related. I refer to them as “mom and her mini me”. I have also noticed that Grace has a lot of my mom’s and my grandmother’s traits. It’s comforting to me that I will always have a part of these two women in my daughter. Both women have been the biggest influences in my life and my best friends.

I formed a really strong friendship with Grandma Kelly after my grandfather passed away. We would talk over the phone and I would check in with her throughout my travels around the country. I made sure that something would be delivered to both my mom and my grandma on St. Patrick’s Day and Mother’s Day. It was a way to show them both how much they mean to me.

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