So there I sat watching Tracy’s hand calmly comfort the sobbing cheek of Meili one tired afternoon – and all these thoughts came rushing through my mind (as usual). This hand has comforted three of our own children in exactly the same way so very many times. Follow her hands down to her fingertips and you can see the true sign of motherhood – chipped nails with polish peeling. It seems insignificant to most but the truth is, Tracy’s nails look this way most of the time because she does so little for herself. You can find in our kitchen cabinet several gift certificates to local salons that have gathered through the different Mother’s Day celebrations – which usually go unused until just before I purchase another one for her. The last person she thinks about is Tracy and as more little monkeys join the Davenport zoo (this is the LAST!), her own cares and concerns drop further down the line. The more I looked closely at her care worn hands, the more overcame I felt with thankfulness for this amazing woman who has transformed into a sensational mother. We go to the mall and I leave with a new shirt and she leaves with a skirt for Leila or shorts for Tristan. We go out to eat and she orders a desert that she knows someone at home will enjoy. As the years have progressed in our relationship (18 years and counting), my ability to ascertain Tracy’s needs for the purpose of gift purchases has gotten progressively worse! That is because she gives so much of herself to our family that I rarely ever hear the words, “I wish I had…” or “I really want…”
Tracy was born in the year of the OX according to Chinese Astrological calendars and here is what they say about the OX:
Those born in these years are typically reliable and dependable. Ox personalities often rise to positions of authority and make excellent leaders, however they are seldom elected into high official status because of their lack of flair and excitement.
The Ox achieves through routine hard work and patience…not that the Ox lacks a creative imagination. They are hard-working and persistent, and can stick to a task longer and harder than others. They believe in themselves.
Although seldom romantic, the Ox is very tender and loving to the few lucky enough to receive such attention. They are not social or party animals and tend to be quiet when in groups. People who are around oxen-personalities often misunderstand them, but oxen are patient and caring. An ox is the best friend you could choose.
In business, the Ox often bring prosperity as a result of logical thought and extensive planning. They are exceptional at hand-crafts or the arts.
The Ox has a prime place in Chinese symbolism and appears on the first page of almost every Chinese Almanac. The Ox is a symbol of diligence, perseverance, tenacity and thoroughness.
Meili begins to drift off to sleep as the magically calming touch of Tracy brings another strong will into submission. Without knowing I am watching, she brings her hand to her face to look at those beat up nails one more time. The nervous worries born deep into every mother (adoptive or not) drive her to biting on her splintered cuticles one more time. Just as quickly, those tired hands are off to the next task on the list that has no end and another selfless mother buries her simple want for a small bit of prettiness for the sake of her family.
Thank you Tracy, you are the best and we are blessed to have you in our lives!