Here's why moms are so great: Your Stories

In his MVP acceptance speech this week, Kevin Durant offered a stirring, heartfelt tribute to his mother, saying: "You're the real MVP."

Ahead of Mother's Day, CBS News asked readers to share their own tributes to, and favorite memories of, their mothers. The responses, posted in tweets to the @CBSNews Twitter account, messages on the CBS News Facebook page, and comments on CBSNews.com, show just why we celebrate Mother's Day each year.

There are a lot of extra special moms out there. Here are the stories of a few:

"My mother taught me never to give up on myself.. I always was chubby and awkward but my mom who was small women ... She would exercise with me every night and encourage me anyway she could to lift my spirits... My mother has been gone for ten years but her life lessons keep me going even on my worst days." - Carla Jackson

"My mom taught me so many things. She taught me how to be a mother, she taught me how to be strong and independent. My mother was a young mother at the age of 15 years old, but that never stopped her from pursuing her dreams of going to school and teaching me that values that I try to instill in my kids today. I returned to school later in life to obtain a Master's degree and my mother was my inspiration every step of the way, because I too was a teenaged mother. Now I have a son who has obtained his Master's and a daughter who is continuing her education to become a teacher and we all have "grandma Rita" my mom to thank. I'm shouting all the way to heaven. I love you mom and I hope that we are making you proud." - Talisa Bracy

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"I remember walking home from school in the 8th grade. A strange man pushed me to the ground and stole my gym bag. I was obviously shocked and scared. My mom pleaded with me to let her pick me up from school from now on. I refused trying to be brave and wanting to walk home with my friends. She attempted to try to blend in with the after school crowd hoping I wouldn't notice her walking on the other side of the street. I felt so much safer knowing she was near and I thank her for our sacred bond." - Ronald Wainwright

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"I have so many wonderful memories of my mother but my fondest one is when I was 9 years old. My mother took all of us (5) kids to our school fair. At the time all I wanted was a new bike. My older brother and sister had one and I was angry that I didn't. I played a game at the fair with my friend and one a cake of my choice. My mother ran over and said to get the German chocolate cake since that was my dad's favorite. She then told me to watch my little sisters since she only had two dollars left and she needed to get something. What ???!! Not only did I not get the cake I wanted I had to babysit my little sisters!! In my young selfish mind I wasn't going to stand for this. I grabbed my sisters hands and went looking for my mom. I finally found her standing in line to buy four raffle tickets for a new bike for me with her last two dollars. I learned that day about the countless selfless acts a mother does for her children. I try everyday to be the same wonderful mother to my children that my mother was to me. It's a tough act to follow... Happy Mothers Day Mom!!! I love you." - Callye

"In 1973 I was 12 years old having my first of many hip surgeries. At this time, my mother was not permitted to stay over at John Gaston Hospital with surgery on minors, no exceptions. My mother hid under my bed and spent the night because she could not drive and was afraid she would miss my surgery if the buses made her late. She violated the policy to make sure she was there to see her child have her first major surgery. She is no longer here, but I sure would love her honored. This was just one of the countless acts of her love for me . She showed me the art and sacrifice of love in action and I have learned to love others in this same way. She raised us to persevere through all adversity and challenge. Hence, my brother became a Pittsburgh Steeler in 1975, but pass at 43 of a massive heart attack. She faithfully said to us, Whatever you do--be the best and if you cant be the best, be second best. I would be proud to have her honored although she is no longer her in the physical world." - Linda A. Hullum

"My mom grew up in a coal camp in West Virginia and only completed the 8th grade of school, but she valued education and was determined that I would attend college. She told my dad that she would only marry him if he promised that they would never live in coal-company housing, and he kept his promise and moved to Charleston where the educational opportunities were greater. A coal miner didn't make very much during the time when I was growing up plus there were numerous strikes which drained the family's budget. My mother sacrificed and somehow managed to send me to college, and I am just completing my 41st year as a middle-school teacher!" - Phyllis Vaughan Pilewski

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"My Mom is 93 & in a wheelchair for last 2 1/2 years; so we have reversed the caring roles that started many years ago. Mom was a farmers wife; great cook & the Best Bread maker ever. She was a Cleveland Indian fan until her mind got blurred, but still watches the games. I remember when I came home from Fort Hood, Texas with our baby son,and stepped off the plane, back then Mom & Dad meet us at the plane, I tried to hand Billy to her and said Don't you want to meet your Grandson, she replied it's you I need to hug, I've missed you so much, I don't know him yet. Bless your heart Mom I love you." - Linda Longsdorf


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"My mom has been gone for 7 years, but what made her so special was her ability to always make us (I had 2 sisters) feel important and special. On our birthdays she made each of us a themed cut-out cake, fully decorated like a lion, a rainbow, a school girl to name a few, and she continued the tradition with her grandchildren. She was a great baker, and after that horrible day at school, we would find a plate of hot chocolate chip cookies awaiting. She had this uncanny sense to always know what we needed emotionally. She taught us how God created us uniquely and perfectcly in His image. Her favorite bible verse was, 'rejoice in the Lord always....' I rejoice now for the many years of her influence, and so appreciate how special she made me feel." - Sue Flynn, Waterloo, Iowa

"Marla Dickerson was so special and I wish I knew it when she was alive. We didn't need a father because God was with her everyday showing us her love." - Major Marci Hodge, US Army Reserves

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"My Mutti (mom) grew up during very tough times, fleeing from bombs during WWII in Czechoslovakia. Losing her home, clothes, and everything personal that a 12 year old child cherishes, except what fit in one suitcase. She has been a strong & outspoken advocate for herself and her children. She inspired our individualism. Taught us the true meaning of right from wrong. She taught us to respect nature. She taught us to not follow blindly but to question and think for ourselves. Not all of her choices were easy ones. Some may have even been poor choices. Who has not made poor choices in life? She loves us, her children, dearly. She respects our differences. She cherishes our adult relationships. Mutti is now facing serious life threatening heart failure. Everyday is more precious than the last. I love you Mutti." - Hedda Britt


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"My dad died when I was 11 yrs old, my sisters were 6 and 15... Our mom was 41 and had been a stay at home mom and homemaker never having the experience of working during her marriage as was the norm back then ... We had our home but soon she realized that social security benefits and what was left of life insurance would not stretch enough to keep us out of poverty... Three of our father's brothers wanted to take each of us girls to raise so that mom could make her way without us to burden her....she was heartbroken to think that the only help they could give would take us from her .. She turned her back to their offers and set out to work for the first time in her life... She got a job at the local city hospital doing a menial job but she had benefits ... Her hours were 6am to 2 pm including weekends and all holidays. We did not own a car so she took the bus which required one transfer to get there rain or shine , winter or summer until after I graduated high school and helped her purchase a car.... Every morning when we girls would get up for school our lunches were waiting on the table and our clothes were set out for us...on Christmas and thanksgiving we would awaken to the smells of stuffed turkey baking in the oven that she had prepared before she left for work( remember she had to be there at 6 am)."

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