Mother's Day Gardening Gifts - Quicken Loans Zing BlogMother’s Day is nearly here, and as the old saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child.” As a mother, I can’t think of a statement more true! This includes all of the second mothers such as the aunts, neighbors, godparents and parents of friends. On Mother’s Day, we can thank our entire village of cheerleaders and mentors. I don’t have enough fingers to count all of my adoptive aunts, uncles and family friends who’ve provided invaluable support for my sisters and me. There’s no question that my mom and dad were my greatest teachers, but without my extended family, I would’ve missed a lot of extra love throughout my life.

Aunt Evelyn was my constant supporter, Aunt Harriet taught me the value of financial responsibility, and Clarice always took extra time to talk with me about girl stuff (like fashion). There’s no amount of thankfulness that could sum up the contributions that my mother figures gave me.

Meet three people who, like me, will be saluting the second mothers in their lives this Mother’s Day.

Vreena

Vrenna and her aunt Dollie

Vreena Jones says that her aunt, Dollie Howard, who lives in Detroit, Michigan, has always been an important figure in her life. But it wasn’t until her mother passed away in 2006 that her Aunt Dollie’s presence became so significant.

“She did everything; she cooked for me, prayed for me and she really became an intercessor for me,” Vreena explained. “When her picture pops into my mind, I think of her lovingness and the way that she has come to my rescue every time I’ve needed her. She’s always there for me at the drop of a hat!”

“She is MOST special because she literally never left my side the night my mother died,” Vreena recalled. “I think it takes a wonderful person like her to come through the way she has for my father and me.”

“Aunt Dollie’s honesty is the one thing that I love the most,” Vreena said. “The single most important lesson that she’s taught me is to be thankful for everything I have in my life. And I’m most thankful for all that she’s done for me,” she said.

Quincy and Craig

Craig and his aunt Quincy

Craig Atterberry said that his aunt, Quincy Kiracofe, is the woman he’ll be saluting this Mother’s Day. He said that she’s been the woman with a watchful eye and caring heart in his life before and after his mom passed away in 2003.

“I love the way that she is completely genuine,” he said of his aunt, who lives in Columbus, Ohio. “She’ll give anybody a chance, no matter who they are or where they’ve come from. She has a big heart.”

Quincy has served as a guiding light for Craig, his brother and his cousin, in addition to her two daughters.

“I most appreciate the fact that no one asked her to step into this role in my life. It’s just something she took on her shoulders on her own prompting,” Craig said. “She lives her life by leading by example. She has taught me that no matter what, always support your family.”

Craig fondly recalled his wedding day in 2014 when he called Quincy out onto the dance floor during the reception for the “mother and son dance.” She was so excited and happy for me and my wife.

“I hope one day I can be as selfless as she is and be there for my immediate family the way she has. It has really been more about her actions than her words,” he said of his aunt, who has worked more than 25 years as a middle school and elementary school teacher. “She has touched so many lives and even now if she saw a student on the street, she probably could tell you their name and something about them!”

Hunt family

Amber and her aunt Tammy

For Amber Hunt, her aunt, Tammy W., has served as a mother figure since she was 9 years old.

“My parents passed away when I was young, and my brother and I moved in with my aunt and uncle. My aunt was never obligated, but has always been supportive and caring without skipping a beat,” Amber said. “She always did whatever she could to be there for us and for her two biological kids.”

Amber credits her aunt, who lives in Holland, Michigan, for providing a true testament to the value of having a mother and selfless caregiver in your life who will do anything for her children.

“Her patience is something that I strive to possess one day,” Amber said. “She rarely gets upset and seems to take everything in stride.”

In addition to Aunt Tammy’s tamales, she most appreciates the one-on-one time that they’ve shared over the years.

“I love the simple times when we’ve talked about life, relationships and the daily things going on in our lives,” Amber recalled. “My aunt taught me to appreciate these moments. And this has really come to define what family means to me.”

Amber, who is expecting her first child, looks to her aunt for inspiration as a soon-to-be mother.

“I hope I can be as giving and selfless as she has been. She does so much for everyone else and still manages to take care of herself,” she said. “From what I hear, motherhood can be crazy at times. I hope to approach it with the same poise and grace that my aunt embodies.”

If you’d like to salute a special mother figure in your life, please share the reason she inspires you below.

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