Having been raised by wolves, as I've regularly described my childhood, other women stepped up to make sure that I was parented when my parents couldn't or didn't know any better.
As a very young kid, it was my mom's best friend. As I was a trauma birth, she was the one who cared for me the first month plus of my life. In fact, she made sure I was taken care of the first part of my young life. She sees me as the daughter she never had.
My paternal grandma helped too while she was alive. She died when I was five, but I still remember her babysitting and making sure that I was spoiled and had what I needed.
During grade school, my mom became a volunteer firefighter with a group of stay-at-home moms. Those women also stepped up and made sure I was okay over the years.
Mostly I remember my high school best friend's moms. At sixteen/seventeen, I was working, going to school, paying bills, and
driving. I was an adult mostly but I still felt their watchful eyes on
me. They made sure I got home, school, or to work on time, had what I needed, fed me, answered my questions. Parented me when I needed it.
So, today I'm giving a shout out to those moms who take care of kids who aren't theirs. Not the foster moms or the step moms. The moms who just take in the friends of your kids without a thought. You might not think they notice but they do. You may think it's nothing or a little thing but it's not.
I appreciate every meal, every hug, every correction, every thing they did to step up and fill the gaps.