So family for most of us is not something that we can choose, and for some of us it can be a source of great mental, physical and emotional pain. However there are those in our lives who may not be related to us by blood, but are every bit as important to us as our family and in some cases, more so. I am fortunate that I have a great mom, she’s funny, goofy and oddly serious at odd moments. Growing up she was like my best friend and now she’s more like a sister to me.
I imagine it would be hard for anyone to raise a child on their own; the fear and uncertainty of whether they are doing it right. The stress of having to be both parents and the anxiety that comes with knowing that one day, your child will grow up and they may either appreciate or disdain everything you did for them. In my case it’s appreciate, because through all the good times and our rough patches, I know with 1 000 000% certainty that she is like a fierce mother lion and she always has my back, even though she doesn’t always express affection in the most typical fashion.
She’s the reason I absolutely love watching horror movies, even though they are the bane of her existence (I think it’s a pretty funny story…so I’ll save that for a future post). Growing up, I never really felt that I was missing out on anything, because she did her best to remind me that my parents loved me. I think that’s something that people so often forget to do. When relationships end and people are upset, it’s easy to project those negative emotions onto the kids, it’s easy to badmouth the other person. For most children, they will internalise those thoughts and emotions, regardless of how you feel about each other, you should put your child first and that’s precisely what she did.
Even absolutely horrendous movies, she would watch with me (we watched LOTS of movies together). She’d even play scrabble with me, but we had to stop…the shortest scrabble game we’ve managed, lasted for 3 hrs…we are both competitive (Scrabble now has to be organised weeks in advance to make sure there is enough time to play). Most importantly, she is the reason I love mathematics and algebra. She was always so busy working, trying to provide for me, so she decided to teach me algebra when I was 2. I can understand her logic, she thought I would be thoroughly distracted and struggle with it, giving her a few hours of peace…I thrived. In my case I was just so happy she was spending time with me, so I picked it up pretty easily so she would spend even more time with me.
Thinking back…she should have taught me physics instead…as physics is the bane of my existence. Maybe then she could have gotten her wish, or I could have mastered physics (I personally do not like applying my maths to anything). She encouraged my love of literature and the arts, and supported my dislike of physical activity in my youth. Mom was the one who made me afraid of cabbage patch dolls, and would re-enact the T-rex chase scene from Jurassic Park just to get me to sleep. There were so many things that she did for me growing up, each one deserving of it’s own post, but most importantly she always believed in me when I didn’t. I know that Mom’s get a day…technically a weekend for us to show our appreciation, but I don’t think that’s enough time.
If you are like me and have a wonderful mom or mother figure in your life, instead of just showing appreciation this weekend, maybe show a little extra appreciation every other day as well. Life is unpredictable and I lost both my grandmothers suddenly, and it was worse for my parents. So for this Mother’s day I want to thank you for the big things (Being my mom) and spend the rest of my life, thanking you for the little things (Every day you made me laugh, all the silly things we’d do together and most importantly…thanks for keeping me around, even when I was a handful).