Everybody has a mother and most everyone of us thinks ours, of course, did a great job. Moms are there for us, believing in us when nobody else does, ignoring the worst in us, and always helping to reach for the best in ourselves. Most of all, our mothers teach us the lessons we need to become good and productive and happy people. Since my own mother is hours away and circumstances do not allow either of us to travel to the other for this day, I want to tell you a few of the lessons my mother taught me.
My own mother is going through a lot right now, but that has been the story of her life. That is the first lesson I learned from her- be prepared, and take whatever life throws at you. You can't change it, so deal with it. My mother had three children under four when her husband, my father was killed in an accident. A high-school graduate, she had to work full time to support us, she had to be both mom and dad to three little children while dealing with her own grief. Her success is measured by the fact that while that time must've been tough for her and for our family, I really have no bad or sad memories of my childhood. However her experience drove home to me that a woman should always be prepared to make a living, because life can change in an instant.
My mom's second lesson that she taught me was to make good decisions. One of the best she made was to marry my stepfather who treated my brothers and I like his own flesh and blood, even after they had my baby brother. My mother always put family first - she has always been there for her mom and sisters, us kids, my dad, her friends. She went to the hospital so many times, staying with my brother when he was young and sickly, she stayed up late waiting for us to come home. She baked treats for school, drove carpool, helped with long division, cheered in the stands at countless little league games and when I was on drill team, helped sell boxes of Girl Scout cookies, all while holding down a full-time job. She saw all of her children march across the stage and graduate from high school, quite an achievement by today's standards. As I get older and my own kids grow up, I have a real appreciation and respect for all she did. As I get my own daughter ready for prom, I marvel at how my mom found the time to make me a green velvet dress for a winter formal (although I recall that the project involved a number of bad words!) and a dress for my prom that was the hottest trend that nobody else had. I hardly find the time to fix a button, or sew up a seam, much less make a dress!
Growing up my family was not one where feelings were discussed a lot. We were not huggy people. My mom did not have to tell us that she loved us...she showed us everyday by being there for us. She was the glue that held us together no matter what. And I guess that is the final lesson that I learned from my mom... that actions speak louder than words. Now that I am a mom myself, I take this lesson to heart, but have also learned to be more comfortable sharing my feelings (good and bad) with those I love. My mom doesn't have a computer, but I know my brothers do and I hope that someone will show her this post (I will be sending it too!) And so I abandon food for the day... or maybe not, because all the things my mother did for me and showed me are food for my soul. This post is for my Mom, my way of reaching across the miles to say thanks for all that you have done and continue to do for me and our family. Happy Mother's Day Mom, I Love You!