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  • Approved for CNN

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    Posted April 8, 2014 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    In praise of “other mothers”

    Unconditional Love


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     hmgj says that "physically" her parents never neglected her and her brother, providing them with a nice home, clothes and food. But when it came to emotional support, hmgj says she received that from her grandmother Toni.

    "The most important lesson I learned from my grandmother is that every child deserves unconditional love," she said. She says that the relationship she had with her parents wasn't unique for her generation. Her parents "when they did pay attention, focused on how I was performing in school and my behavior. My grandmother, however, was always willing to listen and always responded positively. I always knew what she wanted most was for me to be happy."
    - Verybecoming, CNN iReport producer

    My other mother is my maternal grandmother. I was born to a teen-aged mom. I needed my grandmother’s care, which she graciously and lovingly provided, making her instrumental in my upbringing and forever cementing our bond.

    I was surrounded by family and I understood that they loved me, but I needed something more. My grandmother gave to me the one thing a child needs most - unconditional love. I never worried that she would stop loving me if I behaved naughty or because she didn’t like how I dressed or cut my hair or because of what I wanted to be when I grew up. She never tried to tell me I couldn’t do something or should do something just because I was a girl. While I was filled with insecurities and doubts, she was the one person who made me feel like I was perfect exactly as I was.

    My grandmother, now in her 80s, has Alzheimer’s disease and it scares the hell out of me. I don’t want her to suffer and I don’t want to lose one of the most important people in my life. I am grateful for the remaining opportunity I have to tell her that I love her, too – unconditionally.
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