1000 families project danielle and family with the wiggles

1,000 Families Project:
Danielle and Family

A foster child from age 10, she never used to believe in angels—until she became a mom.

I never wanted to be a mom, even before the doctors told me that I wouldn’t be one. My mom died of breast cancer when I was 10 years old. It was that fear that made me want to avoid motherhood. What if I left my own child motherless too?

When I became pregnant for the first time, I panicked. I had no idea what to do next. My foster mom tried to help; her own experience had been limited to teenagers. But she became the grandma our baby girl deserved. And my mom’s mom thrived being the great-grandma to our wee one. The two ladies became an anchor for me in motherhood when I felt like I was drowning. It was from the both of them that I relaxed about being the perfect homemaker and just enjoyed my child. I learned to prioritize and didn’t sweat the small stuff, like dust bunnies.

Days before I gave birth to our second daughter, my maternal grandmother died. We had already named our new baby by giving her my mom’s middle name—was also my great-grandma’s name. It seemed appropriate to have their legacies continue.

A mere month later, my beloved foster mom died suddenly. Our little village emptied and left my husband and I at the helm. We began to parent the way that seemed right by taking what we liked and didn’t like from our own childhoods.

I never used to believe in angels, until I became a mom. Our village began to grow—including a mix of blood relations, family by heart and new friends. It was if our angels helped surround us with the love and support that they themselves would have given.

Two months ago our youngest was invited to meet her rock stars, The Wiggles, on her sixth birthday. The musical group have been on constant rotation in our house for years. One of my favourite parenting moments was seeing the look of pure joy on both our girls’ faces as they got to shake hands with the troupe. It was the best and most surreal gift I could have ever imagined.

A month ago, we went to see Santa Claus. We always go without any expectations. Our youngest daughter has sensory challenges, so we never know what can happen in certain environments, including “The North Pole.”

When Santa saw her peek out from the gate, he motioned us over. He spent time talking with our older daughter first, and let our youngest take her time adjusting to his space. He got her.

Observing our two girls enjoying the moment with the big man himself was thrilling. Then Santa turned to me and handed me a gift, a beautiful sterling silver necklace with a puzzle-piece pendant. It is a symbol of autism.

Our village is small and filled with all kinds of angels. Some are in our hearts, and some are right here proving that everything will be okay.

This is #1000families post number 64. Do you have a family story of your own to contribute to the 1,000 Families Project? Or do you know a family that might want to do so? Learn more about how the series got started and how to get involved here. You can find all of the #1000families posts here.

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Danielle Christopher

About Danielle Christopher

Danielle began writing about being motherless when her youngest was a baby—just in case she had the same fate as her mom. She lives in Langley, B.C. with her husband of 22 years and their two daughters. Find her on Twitter @DanielleASigne or read about her journey on her blog motherlessmoments.com. View all posts by

'1,000 Families Project:
Danielle and Family' have 1 comment

  1. January 26, 2015 @ 10:17 pm Angels Around Us: Thank you 1,000 Families. | Motherless Moments

    […] Thank you 1,000 Families for letting us share our story. […]


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