Well it’s Mother’s Day. You know how it goes. Once a year. We make our mom’s breakfast in bed. We buy them flowers. We take them out to dinner and wait 2 hours even though we have a reservation, because Mom is not supposed to cook. And quite frankly, no one else is going to do it. You know the Mother’s Day drill.
Today is about my mom. There is so much I can say about her, so much I am grateful for. I am so sorry I spent my teenage years fighting with her. If I would have known then that she would be my best friend, I would have started the friendship earlier. My mom is my everything and I owe everything to her. Except my wild sarcasm. That did not come from her. I was born with that quality.
My mom is different than a lot of moms out there. My mom gets 2 awards. One for Mother’s day and one for Father’s day, because for so many years she had to play both roles. She is a selfless woman, who puts my sisters and I at the top of her world. She always made our lives great, regardless of what it was behind the scenes. She protected us. That is her job and she takes it seriously.
I do not have memories of my parent’s fighting. I know that they did. Leaving my father to an addiction so bad that their love could not win the fight must have been one of the hardest moments of my mother’s life. Yet she took my sister’s and I and moved us out of a bad situation. With independence I don’t believe she even knew she had, she moved us to Florida. With no friends, no job, and no idea what was going to happen. She did it with such fearlessness and grace. She did what she had to do to make a better life for her kids. She would do it again in a second.
I do not have memories of my mother’s financial strain. I know that it existed. We were not poor. However, my mother had 3 daughters. Doing everything was simply not financially possible. But she made it possible. I know that when I went to school on Monday, I was able to talk about the same movie all the other kids saw on the weekend. I saw it too. I saw it at the dollar theater and my mom packed our snacks. I know that I wore the same Limited Too shirts as everyone else. Mine were just last season’s colors from the sale rack. We often had leftover nights. My mother was never wasteful. You know what I remember? I remember sitting down every single night as a family. With no TV. With my mother and my sister’s. And later on with our extended family once my mother remarried.
My mother has instilled values in me that cannot be taught at any school. You don’t learn how to love unconditionally in college. She taught me lessons that I find myself using every single day of my life. She taught me that while money is nice, it isn’t everything. Money does not buy children’s laughter. It does not build strong relationships. It is not the answer to problems. It does not teach respect. It does not teach sisters to love one another without an ounce of jealousy or competition. She taught me that you don’t need it to be a good mother.
My mother is an absolute inspiration to me. If I can be half of the woman and mother that my own mother is, my daughter will be the luckiest kid in the world. Imagine how lucky I am.
This year is my 27th year celebrating Mother’s Day. My first year ever not living near my mom. Guess who drove 2 hours across Florida to share a martini lunch with me? You got it. My mom.
So, Happy Mother’s Day Mom. Today, and everyday, I celebrate you.