Today is my mother’s birthday.
*Insert cheers and applause here!*
If I were to try and begin describing my mother, I’d use up the whole internet. That’s right–I’d burn out the World Wide Web. So I’ll keep it rather brief.
She is a wonderful lady, and I don’t say that lightly. I love the phrase “wonderful lady” and use it with the utmost rarity, because to me it connotes a person that shines like a diamond in the rough, makes people feel good about themselves and inspires generosity. When I hear anyone call a person a “wonderful lady” it elevates the way I think about them. It’s an automatic response.
So, truly, I mean that my mother is a wonderful lady in every sense of the word.
Those fortunate enough to have wonderful, caring mothers will all argue that their mom is the best, makes the best apple pie and is, in general, Mom of the Year every year. I am here to tell you that my mother is the best, and even though you might think your mother is the best, I’m sure we’re all right in one way or another.
I used to kind of think that having a person to depend on made me less independent, less strong. I thought of all of the people who didn’t have supportive families, and thought if they could do it, so could I. This was a ridiculous way of thinking, because I am blessed with a fantastic family, and they are an incredible asset.
It’s not to say people who aren’t surrounded by a great family can’t be phenomenal, because they can.
I’m just saying it took me a while to appreciate how great people, like my mom, can be more valuable and influential than I ever realized.
You see, my mom is fantastically independent. And pretty much a superhero, because she works, raises four children, two cats, a dog and fifty acres of wild Wyoming land without missing a beat. She has dinner on the table every night and a smile on her face. And even though she has a tendency to work much harder than she needs to and stress out (deservedly) about many things, she is somehow always content– incredibly happy, even– with life.
She is the one that inspired me to cook, taught me everything I know and stood by me when I had meltdowns over the phone.
She buys me maple syrup when she comes to visit because good heavens, that stuff is expensive. (I’m talking real maple syrup, the 100% Canadian kind. That corn syrup Aunt Jemima nonsense is unacceptable.)
She passed onto me her addiction for coffee.
She taught me that anything is possible through lists, logistics and prayer.
She taught me that balanced eating does not consist of green M&M’s and Starbucks. (To which I argued, “I’m eating my greens!” and didn’t get away with that answer.)
She gives great hugs and can’t sit though movies because they’re unproductive. And sometimes when I open my mouth to say something, I sound exactly like her.
(And even though I keep telling her scrunchies will never come back into fashion, she keeps ignoring me, wearing them, and leaving them in my apartment. Next thing you know, I’m wearing a scrunchie, wondering just when it was my resolve crumbled and I literally turned into her miniature.)
Yeah, I know a lot of young women dread becoming their mother.
All I know is, if I turn out half as great of a person as my mother is, I’ll be doing just fine.
(Thanks for sitting through my sappy post. Hi, Mom! And Happy Birthday. You don’t look a day over 29.)