Saturday, May 11, 2013

More Than Mom

I won't bother trying to convince you my mother is perfect. There's no doubt she has her flaws and has made her share of mistakes, just like the rest of us. However, I recently started seeing my mom in a different way, and it's made our already-awesome relationship even better. What better time than Mother's Day to share this little insight?

My mother is more than Mom.

Don't get me wrong. Part of the reason I adore my mother so much is because of the natural bond we share thanks to DNA and the time I spent in her womb. She is the one person on Earth who is truly capable of loving me unconditionally. I've confessed my worst thoughts and actions to this woman without being judged or made to feel inferior or any less worthy of her affection, time, and attention.
But the older I get the more I see my mother as... a woman. Someone who has a history before me, her firstborn. A woman with fears, desires, experiences, quirks, and qualities just like any other woman... just like me.

It turns out I really like this person, regardless of the DNA connection. So now, I'm going to describe my mother as a person, as a friend.

1) She's compassionate and generous. If you're a teenage boy in line at a fast food restaurant and don't have enough money to cover your order, she's the stranger who will discreetly slide cash onto the counter in front of you while you nervously glance back and forth between the cashier and your friends who are goofing off at the drink machines. She was not born into a financially successful family and has never been swimming in dough, but if she has it and you need it, she will not hesitate to give it to you. And if it's something you don't need but really want - a dress for a high school beauty pageant, a plane ticket to go to Washington D.C. with the rest of your class, a swing for your newborn - she will find a way to make it happen.

2) She's empathetic and kind. For years my mother has worked with the elderly and not because its pays well. She has worked in nursing homes and retirement facilities, because she actually cares about how the older generation is treated. She has a natural gift for listening to them, treating them with respect, and taking care of their aging bodies. There are few people who are capable of this. Honestly, I'm not sure that I would be capable of doing it with the ease she has.

3) She's beautiful. Her eyes are the color of honey and her cheekbones are worthy of envy... but those are things she was born with. What really impresses me is how the woman has given birth to five children and still has a kickass figure. I'm sure genetics has something to do with it, but I've also witnessed her dedication to health. While we have both certainly indulged in cookies and chips and ice cream together, she's always been a water-drinker and an exerciser, too. She works hard for the fantastic body she has. And to top it off, nope, she's not vain.

4) She's funny. The problem with this is that it's really difficult to stay on schedule... because when you're in her presence, you have so much fun that the time goes by way too quickly. Before you know it, you're showing up sheepishly at home two hours later than you intended.

5) She's unselfish. I can honestly say that I can't think of a single time she ever tried to manipulate my actions to suit her own desires. She's that woman who will smile in encouragement and then cry behind closed doors about her own hurt feelings, before she will dare make you feel unsupported or guilty.

She's loyal... talented... chaotic... adventurous... modest... smart...
She's my mom. But she's also much more than that. She's simply a good person.
I'm lucky to have her. And, yeah, you should be jealous. :)