I feel like my mom might be a little mortified when she reads this and finds out I’m writing a Mother’s Day post. Sorry, Mom, in the blogging world we write about holidays so you’re going to have to choke back your embarrassment and push through. Or just don’t read on. You’ve been warned…
(She’s a pretty one don’t you think?)
To say I have the “Best Mom” in the world is so cliché that I think I’ll skip it. Pretty much everybody thinks either their mom is the best or their mom is the worst. You don’t really hear anyone saying my Mom’s ok. Nobody says “I have the most ok mom in the world!” That would be dumb. No. Moms evoke extreme emotion. You either love her or you hate her. (PS If you have a mom that just wasn’t capable of loving you well I’m so sorry. I imagine it’s a really hard thing not to have a good mom or have one that caused you a lot of pain.)
Anyway, back to my Mom. I am so grateful to have a mom that not only taught me to be kind and servant-hearted, she showed me as well. She didn’t just tell me that she loved me; she showed me what it meant to actively love someone. This meant she was a servant. This meant she was a caretaker. This meant she was thoughtful. This meant she was supportive. This meant she told the truth. This meant she was a good listener. This meant she knew when to hold her tongue. These are all things I observed and learned while I was still living with my parents but I know she is still that person today. If you asked her about these things she would deny it because she’s one of the most humble people I know. She’s probably blushing just reading this.
My Mom had 4 kids. We were all 2 years apart and how we didn’t drive her to day drinking or pill popping I’ll never know. I remember after having my third child thinking my mom was either crazy or superhuman to have that many kids so close together. When I ask her about it, all she says is, “I don’t remember much about when ya’ll were little.” Yes, sweet mother, you were blocking it out. The 80’s were probably not your favorite decade and rightfully so. In your life, you sat through literally thousands of your kids’ programs, recitals, ball games, and practices. (I just had a thought. I wonder if this is why we get flat butts as we age. Bleacher butt syndrome. Surely that’s a thing, right?) You survived being a single mom while Dad traveled for work. You survived having a kid that was chronically sick. You survived 4 teenagers. You survived putting your kids through college. You survived the emotional heart attack I gave you by making you a grandmother at 48 years old (Superb planning on God’s part.) The more I think about it, the more certain I am that you must be superhuman. Or you prayed an awful lot, which might be more accurate.
After I had my own kids I wanted to be just like you. I wanted to do it exactly like you did it. You were my standard of what a great mom was supposed to be. I’m sure if I had told you that’s what I was trying to do, you would have tried to steer me another way (so humble, guys). Then I figured out that I couldn’t be you. I just didn’t have it in me. It was a bit devastating but a reminder that God made me to be me. If I could be just like you then you wouldn’t be unique. God uniquely designed you to be exactly who you are and there’s no way I can copy it. When Caitlin gets older she won’t be able to be just like me…oh wait. Let’s be honest, she already knows she doesn’t want to be like me because I’m not “the fun parent.” Better to learn it early I guess. What I love is that you have always wanted me to be the best version of myself. I don’t know that you ever had big dreams or plans for me, which I appreciate because I never felt the pressure to fulfill an unrealistic expectation. I think you just wanted me to be happy and love Jesus. And give you grandbabies (You’re welcome.)
Thank you for loving me for the person I am, not the person you wish I were. Thank you for modeling commitment in your marriage so when I got married I understood what it meant to commit myself to someone else. Thank you for the hours spent cooking uneaten meals because you had picky-eaters for kids (I soooo get this now.) Thank you for making my lunch every day of my school life. Thank you for being the taxi driver for every blessed ball practice and game I ever had. Thank you for sitting countless hours in waiting rooms with me while we waited to see the doctor. Thank you for never acting like you felt sorry for me so I didn’t see myself as a victim. Thank you for teaching me that tears are ok. There are so many more things I could say but I’m already crying so it’s probably in my best interest to stop before I get all blubbery and start thanking you for changing my diapers when I was a baby.
After reading this post over again, I want you to forget what I said before. I do have the best Mom ever.
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