I well remember Mom putting my hair in rollers for this, my Kindergarten photo. I felt so incredibly special – she spent a lot of time getting them in tight enough so they didn’t fall out while I slept, but gentle enough that they didn’t hurt my head (my hair is so fine and trying to keep anything in it is nothing short of miraculous). Needless to say I was a giddy 5 year old when I had curls the next morning, a transformation from my stick straight hair. Do you remember those foam rollers from back in the day? Or as my son would say…”In the olden days Mom…” What’s even more special to me now is the recognition my mom worked full time and at the time this photo was taken, she was about 9 months pregnant with her fourth child!!
I moved away from my home town at age 17 and have never moved back. Wow, that’s 30 years ago!!! I just realized I’m not a young ‘un anymore! There have been many times I would have so loved to have my Mom beside me. Sometimes I just want my Mommy and no one else will do.
One particular tradition that has created a treasure of memories for me, is an annual trip to Capital X in Edmonton (exhibition days). Just Mom and me – we start off with a leisurely lunch and watch the thoroughbred races all afternoon, then wander aimlessly around the grounds eating cinnamon sugar donuts, perusing the displays, listening to the entertainment, and maybe indulging in some shopping. I think we have about 18 or so of these delightful excursions under our belts, along with some of that fresh fudge too!
I remember visiting my parents years ago and as the music was playing Mom grabbed me and we danced around the living room. I was on cloud 9. Such a simple thing, yet it meant so much. Then there are other poignant memories like coming to take care of me after major eye surgery 4 years ago, driving 6 hours to see her granddaughter in her first play, having my kids for a week or two in the summers, just being there for me during my separation and last year helping me through what some would consider insurmountable odds.
Mom is a bookkeeper. We all know that during tax season (Feb-Apr) she is committed to complete the task at hand – taxes! Don’t ask her to take the kids, come for a visit, meet you for the weekend, or attend to any other distraction during those months. Period. Last month, the beginning of April, I had a week where I just couldn’t shake this feeling of needing to see her. It was one of those inner yearnings that’s hard to describe, really. I didn’t say anything to her because I knew what month it was.
My sister was coming to town the end of that week and Mom was trying to help us coordinate seeing each other because you know, us girls still need her help to make it all happen!! What I didn’t know is that she was secretly planning to come as well to surprise me. When my sister and nephew showed up on the Friday night I warned them I wasn’t in the best of moods and hoped they’d love me anyway, and then there she was. My Mom. In my house. I got up, collapsed in her arms and cried, and stayed there for a long while. I can’t tell you what that did for me. It was healing, nourishing and perplexing all at the same time. I can’t totally explain why I needed her so desperately, but for her to have sensed the urgency to take time from her busy season to surprise me, well, that’s a divine moment I will not soon forget.
I’m 47 and there are still times when all I want is my Mom. A few days ago she told me she loves me a whole bunch and I realize that not everyone hears that on a regular basis, and I also understand I won’t always hear those words from her. I don’t ever want to take for granted the blessing who is my Mom. I truly am grateful that I have her to share so many memories with – the good and the bad – and that even when it may sound silly to others she totally gets it when I say, “I still want my Mommy!!”
I love you my Mom.