Really, who's to say whose mom is best?
You, that's who!
In the run-up to Mother's Day, we asked you to tell us why your mom is tops - and you did, sharing stories of inspiration and compassion, selflessness and unconditional love.
But it was Stephanie Shuman's bittersweet tale of how her mother stayed strong and kept the family together while caring for Shuman's ailing father that resonated with readers, earning a majority of votes to win the reader's choice award and one of two essentials spa packages from Mateos Salon and Day Spa.
'Even though most 15-year-olds don't get along with their Mom, I can't imagine life without my Mom! She is the strongest woman I know and I look up to her more than anyone in this world, ' Shuman wrote.
Last year, when Shuman's father's cancer returned for the third time, her mom put life on hold to care for him, nursing him at home until the very end.
'My mom showed me what true love really is, how strong she was to keep on going day after day and still be so compassionate about taking care of him! I can't imagine not having her with me because she is what keeps me going every single day!! ' Shuman wrote. 'She has taught me more than any one else could and has been there for me, when no one else could, and I can proudly say she is my best friend! I love you Mom!!! '
If there's any occasion that can make us forgive the liberal use of exclamation points, it's Mother's Day! Yay moms!
Also earning a spa day package at Mateos is Jenny Vogan's submission about her mom, who delivered twin girls - Jenny and her sister Beth - in January 1984. Jenny was born healthy and went straight home; Beth, though, spent three weeks in Memorial Hospital's neonatal intensive care unit.
'As a first time parent, my mom struggled to recover from her surgery, take care of a newborn, and care for a sick infant in the hospital, ' Vogan wrote. 'My dad helped as much as he could, but as a new captain stationed at the Air Force Academy, his job kept him very busy. '
When it was time for Beth to return home, doctors prepared the family for the worst. There was a chance the baby had cerebral palsy and would never walk or talk.
'My parents were worried but hopeful, and my mom persevered to do her best for her baby girls, teaching my sister to nurse and providing her with physical therapy, ' Vogan wrote.
Beth eventually overcame her physical problems. Today, after four years in the Navy, she's finishing up a master's degree with plans to become a physician's assistant.
Last month, Vogan gave birth to healthy twin boys.
'My mom supported me along every step of the way. She filled my freezer with meals and did my shopping at the end of my pregnancy, knowing how hard it is to be pregnant with twins, ' wrote Vogan.
'Since their birth, she has continued to shop and cook for me, helped my family financially, and come over daily to care for the twins (and their two big brothers!). She has made my twin experience much less harrowing than hers! My mom's selfless caring from the day we were born enabled me and my sister to thrive, and now she is helping the next generation of twins to succeed! '
To read all the entries, visit coloradosprings.com. The 'My Mom is the Best ' contest link is on the right side of the home page.
Contact Stephanie Earls: 636-0364