Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Mamma Mia

I know there are a lot of wonderful mothers; I’ve met many of them. But there is no question at all that my Mom gets top billing, and probably the Purple Heart of Motherhood.

First and foremost, Mom wins the prize for surviving my aforementioned adolescence. It was really a record-breaker. I was hysterical, or close to it, nearly every day...for years. My personal punching bag was the one person on the planet who had the capacity to forgive my atrocious behavior and come back for more: my mother. And I finally emerged from that phase just a bit more stable; what might charitably be called A Troubled Teenager. Which she also endured, and forgave.

My mother possesses the very rare ability to keep her mouth shut. (Unlike the parallel parking skills, I missed out on this one.) She’s the opposite of that mythical Jewish Mother who’s supposed to be nosy and judgmental. Even if you wheedle and whimper, the most Mom will offer is a series of leading questions. “Well, what do you think will happen if...?” or “Have you thought about...?” She will gently lead you to the Least Stupid Option, and then give you all the credit in the world for making such a wise decision.

Mom is always busy, a whirlwind of activity. (Yeah, the energy level also was not passed on.) She’s always been involved in volunteer work, and recently has utilized that patience by helping with an adult ESL class. A talented seamstress, she sewed quite a few dresses for me in elementary school; even then, I loved wearing something that no one else had. She also knits and crochets at a rate that Madame DeFarge would envy. She has made scores of chemo caps, premie caps, baby blankets and afghans for various charities. Grandma Sophie was a professional caterer for many years; no surprise then that Mom is also a wonderful cook and baker. I didn’t know until I went out into the world how special it is to have a mom who makes things. I thought everyone grew up like this, and the truth is, very few did.

Mom is also very funny and doesn’t hesitate to laugh at herself. I think her humor, her patience, and her loving, ever-forgiving heart are what I treasure most. You just couldn’t ask for a better best friend.

There are a lot of wonderful Moms out there, and they never draw a salary for doing the toughest job in the world. But as far as I’m concerned, they’re all tied for second place.


PianoPlinker said...

Bro #1 here.... Sis is absolutely on the mark on all counts. Our Dad is worth a chapter as well, which goes without saying. Stay tuned for the sequel!

Meeta Banerjee said...

That was a wonderful tribute to your mother :)

Anonymous said...

Can she adopt me?

Anonymous said...

ok, you did it....I just read your beautiful (and fanciful, too) profile of me........and the tears started. Thank you for your description......modestly, I must differ on the amount of patience and kindness I've offered.....far too many times they were lacking! but thanks for being my beautiful daughter and my FRIEND!