This is my Mom and me in the ‘Peg circa 1968.
Did someone skin a Cookie Monster to get the pelt for that coat? I’m a muppetized moppet. I love that you can’t see my hands. Wasn’t I just adorable?
More to the point thought, look how beautiful my Mom is. Like a red-haired Jackie-O.
True story. I was showing my boyfriend (circa 1986) some family photos. Someone had snapped a shot of one of my siblings sitting on the floor opening a present. Behind the child were a pair of legs.
Nice gams! says soon-to-be-ex-boyfriend (Look! Hyper-hyphenation)
That’s my mom!
(awkward pause) Oh. Well. Still. Nice gams.
Mom didn’t see fit to award her first-born those nice gams. Damn the vagaries of the genetic lottery. At least I’m not bitter about it at all.
But stop, this isn’t about me, this is about my Mom. Wife of 1. Mother of 8. Sister to 2. Grandmother of 8. Librarian, business-owner, president of many a committee, leader, politician, suburban pioneer, knitter, taker-up of causes.
Some of the things my Mom taught me, although some of them I still haven’t quite mastered. Frankly, I blame the student, not the teacher:
- A house full of life is more important than a clean one
- Act on your ideas
- Be articulate
- Have people over
- Think for yourself
- Substance is more important than flash
- Good wine and good conversation in combination is one of the best pleasures in life
- Make friends with people who don’t have any
- Don’t waste brain space by remembering the plots of television shows and movies
- Find the special deals
- Own lots of books
- Endurance is more important than speed
- Introduce yourself
- The Salvation Army and the clearance rack are awesome
- Get involved
- Notice the world around you: the flowers coming in bloom, the houses being built, the arrival of the swallows
- Be kind
- Dress well and never be seen outside your house without lipstick.
- Be classy.
- Why buy it if you can make it.
- Stand up for what you believe to be right even if it means being the only one standing in a crowd. And even if that crowd is your crowd.
- You don’t have to go with the flow
- Make stuff
- Tell the people you love that you love them
And so, I know you know, Mom, but I love you.
Thanks for all this and all the other things that you just can’t put in a list. I’m incredibly blessed to have you for my mom.