As the years go by, we sometimes just get used to the idea of Mother’s Day being just another day. When life throws you a “curve ball,” and things don’t turn out the way you envisioned them, it is not uncommon for relationships to fade away for one reason or another. Time goes by, years go by, special days come and go, and they all eventually merge into one long day of disappointment. I hope that has never happened to you, or that it never does happen to you, but I know that it has happened to lots of women. Different reasons, different relationships, different heart ache . . . but we always remember. And we always wish the story might have the “perfect” ending. So we wait, and hope, and carry on, no matter what.
Mother’s Day has always been challenging for me, as I did not have a close relationship with my mother. Again, life has a way of pushing us through the valleys, not allowing us time to discover what might really be going on just on the other side of that huge mountain that blocks our view. As years go by, however, we eventually find a bit of time to learn and hopefully understand some of the hidden truths we could not see when we were children. So I don’t know a lot about my mother’s childhood, her teenage years, or her life before I was born. I’ve heard stories about growing up in the Great Depression and how it affected her parents. I’ve heard a bit about how her younger sister was burned as a very small child and, although she survived, she was never quite “right” according to my mom’s recollections.
So it never occurred to me that any of my children would be at all interested in my life “before them.” I guess kids don’t really imagine that their parents even existed apart from the children, so it makes sense that there is very little, if any, curiosity about another time, another place, another life that did not include them. This past weekend was Mother’s Day, and I really don’t take a lot of time to be sentimental about things like that. We are busy, we had a lot of stuff to get done over the weekend, I had to work both Friday and Saturday nights, Gracie worked both Saturday (all day), and Sunday afternoon. Our Daddy offered to help our neighbor who just had back surgery with the mowing of their yard as well as a huge property with a beautiful pond. He spent about four hours working on that before it started to rain. I never really even thought about Mother’s Day except at church, and then I just kind of went on my way throughout the rest of the day.
Until we decided to go into the city to meet up with Gracie when she was off work. That’s when they thought it would be kind of fun to go out for dinner, which we don’t do all that often because I’m pretty frugal and don’t really like to spend money on eating out. Well that was fun! But when we got home, our girls announced that they had a gift for me, which was quite a surprise! She had been really busy with school, tennis practice and matches, and working so it really didn’t matter to me that it wasn’t wrapped up all fancy. I opened the box and inside I found this beautiful book, “Conversations with My Mom.” I’m sure they have no idea how much this means to me.
Inside this beautiful book there are pages where we can fill in information about me. Me. Just the mom. About when and where I was born, where I grew up, who my parents and their parents were, where I went to school, when I got married . . . . all kinds of things that I just really don’t think about very often. Mostly because a lot of it isn’t associated with happy memories. But there it is. My girls want to know.
So they excitedly opened the book and started asking questions. Gracie started writing down my answers but then she announced, “Next time, Mom, I want you to write because when I read this book another day, I don’t want to see my own handwriting, I want to see yours!” She knows. It matters. And so we are having Conversations with My Mom so that someone will remember. Right now, it is enough to know that they care. I am blessed.
If you would like to start your own Conversation with My Mom book, here is a link where you can purchase it on Amazon