Unsurprisingly, Mother’s* Day has me thinking about my mom, all the stuff she’s done for me, the seemingly endless torment I’ve occasionally put her through, and the fact that I should really be out picking up a card instead of sitting here writing. So, I thought I’d write a list of things about my mom, because even though she probably won’t see it unless I show her, at least it’s out there.
1. She does not like it when you play rough near the stairs.
2. When we were growing up, she taught us that it was important to make your own fun. On summer afternoons when we didn’t have anything else to do, she’d pack us each a cooler with a Fluffernutter, an Ecto Cooler, and some other kind of snack and send us on picnics underneath the slide on our swing set. She’d stay inside with her book and listen for trouble, but lunchtime under the slide was a more or less peaceful affair.
3. She taught us that Oreos are at their peak the second you open the package.
4. She talked to us. Which means that my brother and I can be semi-odd trivia nerds who know way too much about The Mary Tyler Moore Show, but it also means that adults spoke to us and told us things about the world that went beyond surface knowledge.
5. Sometimes, in the summer, she’d let us each rent a movie, spread out the big brown blanket on the living room floor, and eat frozen yogurt for dinner. This is how I saw Wrestlemanias I-X and my brother saw The Parent Trap (the original) 97 times.
6. As an adult, she’s anticipated moments that would push me over the edge and then made sure I wasn’t alone for them.
7. When I had my wisdom teeth out, she took me puking all over her white blazer in stride. Later, she made fun of me for not realizing we were in our driveway and for forgetting how to open the car door.
8. She survived the time I decided to teach myself how to shave my legs.
9. When I told her that my trouble student’s final paper ended with the line, “Stop being a squirrel, start being a human being,” she couldn’t stop laughing.
10. She has both indulged and curbed my eccentricities. A grateful world commends her.
* I really think this should be a plural possessive, as in Mothers’ Day, but the greeting card industry tells me I’m wrong.