Michelle Obama Shares a Never-Before-Seen Family Photo for Mother's Day
Three days before Mother’s Day, Michelle Obama took to Instagram to share a rare, unseen photo of her family along with a touching message spotlighting ladies who've made a difference in her life.
In a pre-Mother's Day post, Michelle, 55, said that she needed to pause for a moment to acknowledge those women who aren't her own mom yet have impacted her life.
"I’ve been grateful to be surrounded by so many strong, intelligent, warm-hearted women who, along with my mother, have made me who I am.”
The former first lady shared an appreciation for her grandma LaVaughn, her Aunt Robbie, and her Princeton Mentor Czerny Brasuell. She additionally called out her mother's friend and her daughters' godmother, Eleanor Kaye Wilson or 'Mama Kaye.'
“I wanted to take a moment to shine a light on those women in our lives who may not be our mothers, but have nonetheless played an important role in nurturing us," Michelle wrote. "I’ve been grateful to be surrounded by so many strong, intelligent, warm-hearted women who, along with my mother, have made me who I am.”
She added, “We love her, just like we love so many supportive women whose stories and contributions often go unrecognized, but who deserve just as much appreciation and love this time of year."
The "Becoming" author concluded the post by saying, "So if there’s a Mama Kaye or a Czerny, a Grandma LaVaughn or an Aunt Robbie in your life, make sure to show them some love this weekend, too."
A lot of individuals cheered her message for its inclusivity. In the remarks section on Instagram, one person wrote, “Well said, so grateful for the ones that showed up with consistent unconditional love and support in my life, and taught me to do the same."
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With #MothersDay just a couple days away, I find myself thinking a lot about the way my mother raised me. And even though our family was crammed into a tiny apartment, one of the greatest gifts she gave me was the freedom to explore and develop into my own person. For instance, even though we didn’t have much money, she and my dad cobbled enough money together to send me on a high-school trip to Paris, which opened up the world to me in so many ways. And now that I’m raising kids of my own, I wanted to pass that lesson on to my own girls. I’ve been so fortunate to be able to travel with Sasha and Malia all across the country and around the world—experiences my mother never would have dreamed of back when I was their age. But though the settings may be different, the message is the same, and it’s one I hope mothers everywhere pass on to their daughters—in seeking out new perspectives and reaching outside of our comfort zones, we can discover more about ourselves.
“Thank you for this post,” added another. “As a motherless child and a childless mother this holiday is hard; but I appreciate your expansive inclusive take on it.”
Michelle, who gained international recognition following her husband Barack’s election into US presidency, has long been a source of motivation and encouragement. She's showing others how to be better people and how to live more joyful and more advantageous lives.
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Growing up, every time I’d come home from school with a story to share, my mother was there with a snack and a listening ear to hear about what was on my mind. When I came home with a tale about my disastrous second-grade classroom, she marched into the school to figure out what was going on. And as I grew older, including up through my years as First Lady, she was always there for me as a guiding light through whatever fog was clouding my path. She’s always listened more than she lectured; observed more than she demonstrated. In doing so, she allowed me to think for myself and develop my own voice. From an early age, she saw that I had a flame inside me, and she never tempered it. She made sure that I could keep it lit. Mom, thank you for kindling that fire within me, and for your example as a mother and a grandmother to our girls. We would never be who we are today without you. #HappyMothersDay, Mom. Love you. ❤️
Her wisdom has doled out throughout the years. In an excerpt from her bestselling book, "Becoming," she said, “Don’t ever make decisions based on fear. Make decisions based on hope and possibility. Make decisions based on what should happen, not what shouldn’t."
She also encouraged others to believe in themselves, saying, “You don’t have to be somebody different to be important. You are important in your own right.”
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As we prepare for #MothersDay on Sunday, I wanted to take a moment to shine a light on those women in our lives who may not be our mothers, but have nonetheless played an important role in nurturing us. I’ve been grateful to be surrounded by so many strong, intelligent, warm-hearted women who, along with my mother, have made me who I am. They include my soft-spoken grandmother LaVaughn, whose work managing a Bible book store showed me some of my first glimpses of a woman in charge. I sparred with my Aunt Robbie, who lived below us, during piano lessons—but her teaching showed me the importance of hard work and preparation, and she was always there for me when I needed her most. My mentor at Princeton, Czerny, saw potential in me and did her part to get me to step outside of my comfort zone—to be a little more bold, a little less cautious. And then there’s Eleanor Kaye Wilson, who we call “Mama Kaye.” She’s sweet-hearted and deep-rooted, a second mother or grandmother for all four of us—Malia, Sasha, Barack, and me. She’s been there to help with mealtime, craft time, been to all of our events over so many years—a wonderful friend and confidant to my mother. We love her, just like we love so many supportive women whose stories and contributions often go unrecognized, but who deserve just as much appreciation and love this time of year. So if there’s a Mama Kaye or a Czerny, a Grandma LaVaughn or an Aunt Robbie in your life, make sure to show them some love this weekend, too.
And in her final speech as the First Lady in 2017, she stated, “Don’t be afraid. Be focused. Be determined. Be hopeful. Be empowered. Empower yourselves with a good education … then get out there and use that education to build a country worthy of your boundless promise.”
Aside from working as an advocate for poverty awareness, education, nutrition, physical activity, and healthy eating, Michelle also supported American designers and was considered a fashion icon.