Mother’s Day was this past Sunday. Mother’s around the world were celebrated by their families for all that they do for them.
There are all kinds of mothers in this world. Some are biological mothers. Some are adoptive mothers. Others are foster mothers. And for some they assume the role of “mother” when a child’s biological parent is no longer around. Take for example the person I refer to as my mom. She is not my biological mother. She was my paternal grandmother who raised me since I was 18 months old after my biological mother abandoned me. When I think about Mother’s Day I think about my paternal grandmother. She was my true mother.
Last year we fostered two kittens (one had a disease and had to be put to sleep). We ended up adopting the kitten that survived. That kitten, Bella, is very attached to me. She loves to cuddle with me, sleep next to me, and she even suckles on my shirt sleeve, similar to what a kitten would do if it was nursing.
My kids ask me all the time why Bella is very attached to me. I told them that as far as Bella is concerned I’m her “mom”. I raised her since she was one day old. I stayed up nights with her and her sister, bottle fed them every 2-3 hours, even overnight. I taught her to use the litter box and eat solid foods. As far as Bella is concerned I’m ”mom”.
It is possible for animals to form a special bond with their mother’s, or another animal who serves as a surrogate mother. Animal mothers have the some unique bond with their offspring that human mothers have with their own children.
A new book called Mother’s Love: Inspiring True Stories from the Animal Kingdom, show cases just how special a mother’s love can be for a child in the animal kingdom.
This is a small book (7″ x 7″) filled with beautiful and touching photos of baby animals with their mothers. The book is 96 pages long (a quick read) and contains 60 beautiful color photographs.
The book was written by Melina Gerosa Bellows, with a special foreword by celebrity mom Kate Hudson.
In her introduction, Gerosa Bellows writes, “Perhaps these stories touch me so deeply because they illustrate the common bond of motherhood. They show that mothers are mothers, no matter what species. Animals and humans alike have the natural ability to distinguish the unique cry of their own offspring from the cry of other babies. We are hardwired to love, protect, and care for our young. After all, the survival of each of our species depends on it.
“Whether you choose to call that maternal bond love or instinct, these stories are nothing short of amazing. Each gives evidence of not only the instincts of motherhood but of other traits as well. Strength, tenacity, bravery, ingenuity, selflessness, perseverance, courage, resourcefulness — what human mother wouldn’t aspire to qualities so admirable? Mother Nature has raised her daughters well.”
Throughout the books you’ll find lovely quotes about a mother’s love as well as interesting facts about animal mothers and their children.
Did you know that Beluga Whales weight 200 pounds at birth (OUCH!) and can nurse for up to two years?
Another cool fact, Opossums are the size of honey bees when they are born and live in their mother’s pouch for two months before emerging to see the world.
I love some of the quotes. One that made me laugh was from comedian Buddy Hackett - “My mother’s menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it.” LOL! I can certainly relate to that.
The stories in the book are really heart touching as well as amazing and unbelievable. For example, the dog who raised and orphan deer. There is another dog who raised a baby squirrel along with her puppies.
Two stories that actually made my eyes tear up are perfect examples of just how incredibly strong a mother’s love can be, no matter if you have two legs, or four, or wings or if you are covered in fur.
One story is about a cat name Scarlett who ran into a burning building not once but FIVE TIMES to rescue each and every one of her kittens, even though she was badly burned herself. Even her eyes were blistered from the intense heat. She would not stop until she rescued each baby.
Another incredible story is about a baby dolphin who got caught in a fishing net. His mom and a couple of other female dolphins did all they could to release him from the net, risking getting tangled in it themselves. When he was finally freed the mother pushed him up to the surface so he could breath. The mother was so weak herself that she could barely hold her baby up. So three other female dolphins took turns for several hours to hold up the mother and baby.
Wow. Simply WOW.
These are truly amazing stories.
Look for Mother’s Love: Inspiring True Stories from the Animal Kingdom where ever books are sold. You can also find it here, http://shop.nationalgeographic.com/ngs/product/books/new-books/mother%27s-love.
I have THREE copies of this special book that I can giveaway to three lucky readers (one copy per winner).
This giveaway is open to US residents only and will end on May 28, 2012 at 12:01 AM (EST). The winners will be chosen at random using a random number generator from all eligible entries.
*I received a free sample copy in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own.