As much as anything else, Jen Kessler has always made herself available to listen any time her three sons might need her. It might sound like a simple thing that all parents should do, but for Austin, Caleb and Josh, their mom takes it to another level. She is sincere in her interest in them and focused on delivering whatever guidance, advice or consolation they might need in that situation.
All of those conversations stick with her kids because of the guidance she gave them, but also for the fact she always showed up without fail.
To the three boys, they have always known they can count on her for day-to-day chats and so much more. Jen is a pillar of her family in that respect and a woman who dedicated her life to her husband Greg and to raising her three sons.
Austin, Caleb and Josh are now 24, 22 and 18 years old, respectively, but their mother’s role in their lives remains very much the same.
“Even having moved out, she continues to look after us and help guide us through life,” Caleb said. “I’ve always admired her willingness and readiness to talk to me when I need it. I can always count on her to give an open ear and listen when I need it.”
Jen comes from humble Pennsylvania Dutch beginnings in Ephrata, PA., and she got her bachelor’s degree in English from Messiah College where she met her husband Greg. And while she later became a full-time mom to the three boys, Jen has since taken on a part-time job at a jewelry shop that Caleb calls “unreasonably enthusiastic.”
Jen puts that English degree to the test with books from her favorite author, Jane Austen, and her favorite genre, historical fiction. She is also a skilled gardener.
“Mom maintains gardens around her entire house,” Josh said. “It’s easy to spot the house in the summer because of how healthy and beautiful the front garden is.”
Jen is getting to do a little more of the things she loves now as her nest begins to empty, but she will absolutely be Mom to Austin, Caleb and Josh no matter how old they get.
She has also made no secret that she desires grandbabies as soon as she can get them, but her sons continue to caution that she might have to be patient on that front.
“None of us feel compelled to get started on that just yet,” Caleb said.
Austin, Caleb and Josh do feel compelled to express all of their love and gratitude for the incredible role their mom has played in their lives to this point. She has always been there to help them navigate life’s ever-evolving set of challenges while listening to them and offering unconditional love and support.
None of them could possibly imagine a better mother, mentor or example of unconditional love.
“She means a lot to us,” Austin, Caleb, and Josh said. “Her selflessness and love are two qualities that we greatly admire in her. The influence she has had on our lives is huge, especially when it comes to big life decisions.
“Mom, we love you and thank you so much for being a wonderful mother. The sacrifices you have made to raise us have not gone unnoticed.”