Well, today is Mother’s Day (Huzzah!). And I could write about a lot of things, including:
- The idealization yet disdain of motherhood in our society
- The fact that “women’s work” is chronically undervalued and thus, one Mother’s Day is not enough
- How Father’s Day is also worthwhile, as male parenting is usually not afforded as much respect
- All of the women who wanted to be mothers and now are not, and all of the women who didn’t want to be mothers, and now are, and what this has to with individual and reproductive rights
- You get my point
All worthy topics, to be sure. But I’m not going to go down the feminist deconstruction path today (or at least, not very far). Today’s post is dedicated to what his day is really about: my mother.
My mother is the only member of my family to read my blog on a regular basis. I don’t know how much of it is because she agrees wholeheartedly with my angry feminist views, and how much of it is just because she loves me, but I’m leaning more towards the latter. My mother is the one who calls me at least once a week, just to chat and tell me about all the crazy things her students have done lately, and hear about what I’m doing at school. My mother is always there for a reassuring talk, or hug, or cuddle, or to watch a movie or TV show that I think she should see. My mother is the one who gets up at the crack of dawn to let the dogs out, and frequently the one who puts the little dog to bed at night. My mother is the one who spent years and years of her life trying to figure out what was amiss with a certain member of the family, and still, every day, thinks and reads about how to improve this person’s life and help them live with their condition. My mother is the one who reminds me to get my prescriptions refilled. My mother is almost always the one who comes to pick me up at school to take me home, or to bring me back to school after spending a long weekend with the family. My mother is the one who came to see me when I was in a pit orchestra for a musical my first year of college, despite never having heard of the musical and having to drive an hour each way. My mother is the one who took care of my pet snails when I was away for five weeks during the summer. My mother is the one who buys the foods that she knows I like when I’m coming home, so that I won’t ever suffer the crushing agony that is not enough macaroni and cheese.
My mother is the one who never tires of looking at old photo albums and reminiscing about past events. My mother never, ever, misses an opportunity to say that we were the cutest babies in the hospital. My mother is always up to hear the latest dirty joke or innuendo that pops out of my mouth, and will probably counter with one of her own. My mother is the one who became a Girl Scout leader so that I could have a troop. My mother is also the one who sewed each of my badges onto my vest, despite the fact that she hates sewing (and at one point tried just stapling the badges on).My mother took me to piano lessons, every week, for 11 years. My mother gave me the flute she had played in school 30 years before when I started playing it in fifth grade. My mother is the means by which I hear about the goings-on at my old high school, because she teaches there (and despite having taught several of my friends who might have been less than ideal students, she never involved me in any problems she might have had with them). Since I’ve become an angry feminist blogger who rants about beauty standards and gender roles, my mother bugs me about my hairy legs much less frequently.
My mother is the kind of person that makes new friends in the checkout line at the grocery. Because it’s Rhode Island, talking to strangers usually reveals a common acquaintance, which of course only adds fuel to the fire. My mother is the kind of person to have witty yet school-appropriate comebacks for her students that mouth off, and relate the story with relish later that night. My mother is where I get my ability to consume books as if they were oxygen; she has read hundreds of romance novels or adult contemporary fiction or whatever the hell genre it is that James Patterson writes, but is always up to read one book more (or five). My mother, upon hearing an interesting fact or story, tells everyone that she thinks might like to hear it, which usually ends up including the person who originally said it (who is then struck with a profound sense of déjà vu).
If I have any new story to tell, or new accomplishment to showcase (be it big or small), my mother is always eager to hear it. She’s been there when I’m happy, sad, mad, scared, confused, giddy, hairy, smelly, or sick. She very frequently thinks of others before herself, and doesn’t get enough recognition for it. So now I’m giving her some, in the best way I know how.
I love you, Momma.
P.S. In case my father stumbles across the blog, please let it be known that I love you dearly as well, and appreciate all the things you do. Wait until Father’s Day, and then you’ll get a list of your own! :).