When I was engaged, I had several friends and acquaintances who were also preparing for their weddings. When one revealed that her mother wasn’t going to be attending her wedding due to their years of strained relationship, I didn’t know what to say. “I mean, it’s not like she’s the mom who would be fussing with my veil and telling me how beautiful I looked,” she said.
And all I could think was, “That’s exactly what my mom will be doing.” And she did. On my wedding day, my mom fussed with my veil and my train and she hit the dance floor with my sorority sisters and chased my nieces and nephews when necessary. She dragged me over to her friend’s table to show off the fabric of my dress, popped the champagne early with my bridesmaids, and she didn’t for one moment make my day anything but better.
And I didn’t think twice about it. Because that is who she is. She has been making my days better since I had days.
My mom is beautiful and smart and accomplished and funny. She has more energy than anyone I know of any age, and is happy to get down on the floor to play with the grandkids long after the rest of us has pooped out. And then she’ll make everyone dinner!
I think momma is pretty secure as the matriarch of our family. I really believe she gets the general idea of how much we love her, how thankful we are for her every day. But everyone should hear specifics now and then, so for Mother’s Day I made a list of just a few things I may never have said:
Thank you for forcing me to take Latin in high school when I really wanted to take French. I’m sorry I threw a tantrum over it. It just seemed unlikely at the time that I would take to Latin like I did, studying it all the way through college. That one might’ve surprised you, too.
Thank you for never passing judgment on my friendships or romantic relationships, even when they were all wrong for me. I figured it out eventually. I guess you knew that.
Thank you for taking my daily calls, and listening with interest to every minutia. You’re truly the only person in the world who will ever be that listener for me.
Thank you for always telling me I should be writing, even when – no, especially when – I’m doing anything but writing.
Thank you for always having your own thing – politics and cooking and hobbies like sewing and ebay – because it forced me to develop my own interests, so
Thank you for letting me do my own thing, even when it’s so different from anything you would be interested in: show choir, drill team, sorority, California, film & television…
Thank you for standing by your unconventional belief system. You break all stereotypes and statistics. The older I get, the more this one thing about you teaches me not to make assumptions or cavalier judgments.
Thank you for always making your home the place that we want to be, to run to.
Thank you for being the first person I knew to have email, and for buying me a laptop back when they were so much more expensive than the desktops. You have always known your way around a computer, and that is impressive.
Thank you for buying a mannequin to my measurements when I was in college. The clothes you made me are still some of the best clothes I’ve ever owned.
Thank you for being a working mom in a way that worked. I know of no other mom who flies frequently on private planes and occupies the corner office. I’m so proud of you, and I’m not sure I’ve ever made that clear.
Thank you for pampering my husband when he’s visiting, and for pampering me when I’m homesick.
Thank you for always telling me that I was the prettiest one. And for believing it.