Here’s the thing about my mother. She’s enviable. Honestly, enviable. She’s the type of mom we want to be. She’s the type of mom other people think, oh that would be nice. She’s awesome.
And here are the 10 reasons why she’s amazing for me:
10. She had 6 kids. She loves as all individually. We’re all old now. But she hasn’t stopped momming us. And each of those children was a gift to the others. We might be old, snarky, vicious beasts, but we’re never alone and we always have 5 people outside of our parents who will do just about any thing for us. As of today, she has 16 grandchildren, but despite that, each of those grandkids are sure they’re her “favorite.” Because, she has the ability to love so clearly and surely that those grandchildren are certain of her love. They’re not just sure of being her favorite; they want to be her favorite. *Silly little goslings, I’m her favorite. :>
9. She supported my dad, so his dreams could come true. You see the thing is? My parents got married young. Today, I think a lot of us would say stupidly young. Their prognosis was dead end jobs, a small house (if they were lucky) and a divorce that left them bitter and me fatherless. But not so, those two tied their lives together and worked hard to make–not just a life–but their dreams come true. My mom wanted to be a stay-at-home. She wanted six babies. My dad busted his patoot to make that happen. But in the mean time, my dad wanted to be a pilot, and not just any pilot, he wanted to be a fighter pilot. So, they packed up and moved again and again to make that happen. Mom set aside her fears for that type of job and let Dad fly. Both literally and figuratively. Because of them, I know that my dreams can come true too. After all, I have two beautiful examples in just my parents.
8. Some of my earliest memories include my mom telling us stories about each other. She didn’t just raise us. She savored us. And she helped us to love and respect each other. I don’t care how many times she tells it, the story about how Michael talked Shawn into the “carnival ride” in the dryer just doesn’t get old. Or the time Michael flooded the jerk Colonel’s car. Or the time Steven sat on the top of roofs and shooting kids with bee-bee guns. Sure we were awful, but we were spirited. And she loved us for it.
7. My parents taught me the value of an education. Not just for the sake of a “degree” but because knowledge is the only thing we can take with us out of this life. My mother may have not quite finished her “degree” but she’s never stopped learning or growing. If I’m able to say the same in my later years, it’ll be because of my parents.
6. Neither of my parents are, what you could call, aging gracefully. In fact, if there is anything they’ve taught me, it’s a fear of my 40s, 50s, and 60s. But here’s the other thing. My mom has crazy illnesses. She has doctor stumper illnesses. And in the course of being diagnosed and treated, she got put on some crazy drugs. And when the time came to get off those drugs which (though taken legally and according to doctor presciption) equated to a cocaine addiction, my mom did it in a few months. Why? Because she’s bad ass. But also because she needed to be better. Not just for herself. But for me. And my dad. And my brothers, and my sister, and my nieces and my nephews. My mom got off those pills and lives in pain every day. But the clarity of mind and the ability to be a good mom to her children is more important that popping an oxy.
5. She was always my friend. She didn’t just love me as a daughter. She loved me as a human. Because of that, she’s the type of mom I want to be. I skipped school to hang out with her. She listened to me blather on about books. She’d go out to lunch with her friends and take me. Because I was her friend too.
4. When I was struggling with These Lying Eyes a while ago, I was ready to drop my dream and go back to school. I thought I’d get a master’s degree, buy a little house, and spend my time traveling. She told me to quit being such a whiner and get back to work. It’s because of her that I have a nearly completed book. Should it ever be successful, it’ll be because of that conversation.
3. When my Dad has a stroke when I was 17, he should have died. Doctors were astounded that he lived. Now, doctors are astounded that she’s still with him. I don’t doubt that my dad was able to recover as well as he did because of not just his faith in God, but because he knew that Mom believed in him. She still does.
2. Without her, I couldn’t be a mother. Since I’m single, she went to foster parenting classes with me. She watches SmileyPants during the day because Smiley needed extra care when she first came to us, and my mom with her mad-momming-skills helps me everyday. She washes bottles with me. She folds Smiley’s clothes. She makes it easy for me to be a single momma. I literally couldn’t be a mom without her. But she doesn’t just help, she eases the burden immensely She’s making my dreams come true yet again, and in so doing, she’s letting me have a family. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to thank her enough for helping me have a family of my own.
1. She taught me to love God. And as she did so, she taught me faith in prayers. She taught me to be good for the sake of goodness, and because we love our Father in Heaven. If there is anything good in me, it was taught to me by my parents and given to me as an example in my mother.
So, maybe my mom isn’t better than yours. After all your mom was for you. My mom was for me. But she’s the best Mom I could ever have had. She’s exactly the mom I needed. If being a mother is by design through the marvelous hand of God, then I am thankful everyday for my dear mother. I am truly one of the most blessed people on this planet–just because of my mother.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mumma. I love you.
ps Thanks pastelninja for inspiring me to write this and remember how lucky I am.