Today is my Mom’s 81st birthday. If this was a peach colored rose, it would be perfect. Those are her favorites. This will have to do. My Mom is a wonderful mother. She raised four children, a few dogs, and a couple of cats. She has a great sense of humor, and a love of reading, old movies, music, Jeopardy, Tony Bennett, Law and Order, crossword puzzles, corresponding with her friends, going out to lunch, her church, her family, her cat Nella, and all her grandchildren and grandpets.
I have great memories of laughing with her, watching old movies with her (she’s the reason I know the names of so many character actors – an ability that amazes my husband), watching The Mike Douglas Show, Barney Miller, and a host of other shows with her, listening to her lovely voice singing hymns in church, listening to songs from the 30’s, 40’s, 50’s and 60’s with her (thus contributing to my eclectic tastes in music), making her laugh with my silliness, playing Dominos and Aggravation with her and my Dad (she is a fierce competitor), the scent of Oil of Olay on her skin, the list could go on and on. She was always there for every performance or big event in my growing up years. She was a stay-at-home Mom and was always there for us – waiting with lunch ready when I walked home from elementary school, waiting at the door at the end of the school day or when I had to come home early because I was sick. She had kids at home for a long time – there was a 17 year age difference between my brother and my youngest sister. After we were older, some of us on our own and the youngest in high school, she applied for a job at our local hospital without telling anyone, and got it. She started to work part-time after having been away from the work force since she was 18. We were and are very proud of her.
She and my Dad have been married for over 60 years. They were pen pals, met each other, and were married 6 months later. She was 18. He was 22. They were babies. They are the definition of what commitment and love are about in a marriage. They have stayed together through many ups and downs, have suffered the loss of their only son, and they stay strong.
Mom has given me many things, more than I could hope to express. I thank her for my love of reading, of music, of theater, of movies, of laughter, crossword puzzles, stitching, and of animals. She is a good, loving person and my hope is that I am like her. I know I look like her, more and more as I get older. We even walk the same way.
Mom – Happy Birthday. I’m proud to be your daughter.