Sunday, May 10, 2009
Happy Mother's Day
This day has come and gone 45 times now since you brought me into the world.
There've been handmade cards, and flowers picked from the field, and gifts of perfume you'd never consider wearing - thanks to Dad's well-meaning but questionable advice and his gratefully acknowledged financial support at the local pharmacy where I used to by my 45 records.
There have been Mother's Days where times were tough - and others when times were great. We've sometimes been together - more often we've been separated by thousands of miles.
No matter the circumstances, cards, words, flowers and cheap perfumes - none were never adequate to express my gratitude to you.
From origins so humble you had to sew your own wedding dress and never having ventured beyond the borders of your home state until you were married - you taught me to want a better life but never at the expense of others. And to embrace every opportunity to expand my horizons.
All those years managing executive dining rooms at factories and mills, you taught me that every person has value and is deserving of respect, be they a dish washer or an executive.
You also taught me to be fair but firm - I remember watching those who worked for you cry, every time we left for another adventure.
Through your words and deeds - you taught me to be blind to the color of a person's skin - that people were all the same and should be treated equally.
You taught me patience - all those years you and Dad struggled to make ends meet. You stayed strong and supportive and we never wanted for anything.
You taught me strength. When a prolonged and arduous chain of life events might have crushed another person, you instead burst out of your shell, took charge, started kicking some butt - and have never looked back.
You taught me wonder. Possessing a child-like curiosity and wide-eyed wonder of the new and different, you taught us to look beyond the instant - to explore, to learn and to want to understand.
And you taught me devotion. No matter what life throws your way, if you love someone, you will stay by their side - even at the expense of your own hopes and dreams.
Thank you, Mom. For all of that and more.
Happy Mother's Day.