Sunday, May 13, 2018

Mothers' Day, 2018

This is the eleventh year that I have slightly revised and updated my traditional Mothers' Day post. It may be recycled and tweaked, but it comes no less from the heart. If you've read it before, just know that everything still applies ... read it again if you like, or come back another day for my thoughts on other things ...

Today is Mothers' Day, the one day each year we set aside to honor the lady we undervalue the other 364. It's the day we remember the person who made our hurts better, explained our homework, cooked our meals, washed our clothes, drove us where we needed to go, warned us about our less-savory acquaintances, embarrassed us in front of our friends, and did her best to point us down the straight line of a moral and upright life.

Mothers are the wonderful and woefully underappreciated people from whom the Army and the Navy stole their one-time recruiting slogans - the Army's "We do more before 9 AM than most people do all day," and the Navy's "It's not just a job, it's an adventure." With all due respect to Soldiers and Sailors everywhere ... you don't have a clue.

Somewhere in my web surfing I found this little riff on how we look at our Mothers at different ages:

Age 4: Mommy can do anything!
Age 8: Mom knows a lot!
Age 12: Mother doesn't know everything.
Age 14: Mother doesn't know anything.
Age 16: Mother is so old-fashioned.
Age 18: Her? She's out of it.
Age 25: Mom might know something about that.
Age 35: Before we decide, let's ask Mom.
Age 45: What would Mom have thought about that?
Age 65: I wish I could talk that over with Mom.

It's true.

My mother passed away seventeen years ago at the far-too-young age of 74. She spent a long and honorable life raising four children who, I like to think, made her proud ... most of the time, anyway. And in her twilight years, her once-formidable mind ravaged by Alzheimer's Disease, she missed much of the result of her love and care and sacrifice - a son who can dance (and who may yet write that book she thought he had in him, instead of a blog), a small army of grandchildren, and six beautiful great-grandchildren who will never know her love and wisdom and the off-the-wall sense of humor* that brightened the lives of everyone who knew her.

The next generation of mothers is moving the family forward. Between them, my beloved daughters Yasmin and Tabitha** are raising the world's six greatest grandchildren (Marcy, Joe, Noah, Leya, Elise, and Ava). And someday those wonderful grandchildren will sit down on Mothers' Day and reflect - just as their grandpa does today - on the lady who gave up so much of her own life and dreams to make them who they are.

And so again this year, I wish my own Agnes, Yasmin and Tabitha, my sister Lisa and sisters-in-law Laura and Brenda, fellow bloggers Amanda and Fiona, my dear friends Kathy and Lioudmila, and all the other mothers out there doing the world's toughest job, a very happy Mothers' Day and many more to come. We couldn't be what we are, or do what we do, without you.

And lest you think I'm getting too maudlin about the whole thing, here's a picture from long ago of my Dad with four then and future moms: my daughter Yasmin, my sister Lisa, Agnes, and my mother ...

We're an odd family, but somehow we've turned out more-or-less all right. Good parents will do that to you.

Oh, and in case you haven't seen it, here's The Mom Song, set to the tune of The William Tell Overture ...

Have a good day, and take the time to give your Mother a hug and a kiss. Someday, you'll wish you had.


* Every time you groan at one of my puns, you should be grateful that you never had to go down in flames in a pun war with Mom.

** I don’t think of Tabitha as an “in-law.”


Mike said...

My mother was 72 and it was 28 years ago. But it doesn't seem like it has been that long.

Duckbutt said...

My Mom died 12 years ago. I still miss her.