Today my Mom turned 67. We celebrated last evening. We celebrated Mom and Anna together! We had an awesome time. Today as I think about the special evening we all shared I am reflecting on how much my mother has influenced my life. Moms are supposed to do that I suppose….although I have always felt more of a kindred spirit with my father. Looking back though today I see how much my mother and my life mirror one another.
Specifically the choices that she made so long ago seemed to me, as a teenager, to be all wrong…. how could she NOT want to go to college?? How could she not want a career??? Why would she WANT to iron and cook and clean and sew for us?
Well, she had a career….she had a FULL TIME JOB raising 3 children and managing a poultry farm – for the most part- managing the farm alone. Daddy was an HR director in town. She was educated- maybe not college educated but she was educated in loving her family and putting us first-ALWAYS putting us first. She enjoyed cooking meals for us. She found humble accomplishment in providing hot meals for us every morning and evening. We did not eat boxed cereal….We had homemade pancakes, french toast, oatmeal, cream of wheat, cinnamon toast, homemade biscuits and gravy….for breakfast every morning for as long as I was at home. To this day if you go to Mom and Daddy’s for the weekend you will get one of those homemade items for breakfast.
My dad figured up (at his retirement-he gave Mom a thank you card) that she had ironed over 6000 shirts and pants for him in the course of his 25 years of working in town. One thing I do not do for Donald is iron….now he is a grown man and was cooking full hot meals at age 8 for his siblings….so he can handle ironing.
She loved being home to send us off on the bus and being home to greet us each day when we returned. One of the greatest pleasures in life that I have is being able to take my children to school and pick them up afterward. She loved baking fun treats for our class parties….I host play dates and we always make fun treats since now you cannot take homemade things in. I LOVE IT… I see where her joy came from…
So what have I learned from my mother? To be my quirky self and be OK with me. To find the joy in the simplest of things. To love unconditionally and to forgive. To truly embrace the opportunities that I have for interaction with my children. This stage of life passes all to quickly. It seems like yesterday that Brad was Caleb and Chloe’s age. He is 24. It seems like yesterday that Cory was starting kindergarten….Caleb starts in the fall. It seems like yesterday that Caleb was born……Time FLIES.
This, this….being a MOMMA, is the most important career I have ever had. I want to do a great job…I want to be the best. I want my kids to remember that I was there. I am here. I will always be here for them.
So to my Momma….THANK YOU for being your quirky self. You are perfect for me and for us. You were right about so many things. As the circle of life continues and Anna reminds me so very much of myself at that age….I appreciate you Mom and I thank God for both of you in my life. I see you differently but then I see so many things differently at this stage of my life. Its surreal to be middle aged……I never really understood what that meant until I am there now. You look forward and backward and see the phases of this life…..You ponder the choices of others but do not jump to defend or oppose. As I ride the fine line of daughter and mother I am encouraged to know that I have a wonderful loving example to look to as I try to age gracefully. I hope to be that sort of influence on Anna as time goes by.
Thank you Momma. I love you. Happy Birthday!