Happy Birthday to my beautiful mother, or Mothership as my sisters and I call her. Christina will also refer to her as Mother Cruise Line, but that’s just cruel. I personally prefer Mothertanker or Marmatron3000. While a few of the above nicknames imply that my mom has lasers for eyes and robotic reinforced steel legs, this is sadly not the case. Ahhh a girl can dream. In reality, she is gentle, empathetic, intuitive, and has a kind and generous heart. She also has a killer sense of humor; I guess you have to have a sense of humor to give birth to and raise four girls. The other option is insanity.
I am a firm believer that the more nicknames a person has, the more they are loved. Marm has so many I can barely keep track of them all. They include but are not limited to Marmgurt, Bidet, Marmalade, Marmey, and sometimes we even call her “Mom.”
I was going to wish her a happy 30th birthday (the magic year where your age stops increasing) but then I realized she would have given birth to me when she was 6 years old. I don’t believe this was the case so instead I will wish her a Happy 50th Birthday. Here’s hoping that I have inherited her aging genes! At 50 years old my mom looks stunning. When people see photos of my mother, they immediately comment on how gorgeous she is. When I am told I look like her, I am flattered beyond belief.
One of the best qualities about my mom is her emotional availability. I have a vivid memory of being a 5th grader and having my first pet, LuLu the hamster, die. While we were out of the house LuLu’s water bottle broke and drenched her. By the time we got home, she was barely hanging on. Mom and I held LuLu in a washcloth praying that she would warm up and be okay. She wasn’t. I sat sobbing with my beloved hamster dying in my hands and for every tear I cried, my mom had one to match it. Having hamsters was not exactly fun for my mother, I’m sure. My pinky-promises to take care of a pet hamster before buying one naturally faded after about 2 weeks of purchasing LuLu. Mom would help me feed, water, and clean her cage week after week. Regardless, she grieved for LuLu as though she were losing her very best friend. Her empathy and support in that delicate situation was monumental. She is still the type of woman that will cry tears of pain when a loved one is suffering, or tears of joy when it is a time for rejoicing. Those are important people to have in your life.
I have always been grateful for my mom. I know how fortunate my sisters and I are to have someone who cares for and loves us so deeply. Over the years, things that I have always perceived as “normal mom qualities” have proven themselves to be anything but. In fact, the more mothers I meet and horror stories I hear from friends, the more I realize my mom is so not your typical housewife/mother. For example, when I was in high school mom not only packed lunches for 5 people everyday, she made our sandwiches on delicious homemade-with-love bread! She was like a Stepford Wife without being all creepy and robotic!
When we [my sisters and I] were overwhelmed with school projects, she would clean our rooms, organize our clothes, and bring us snacks to keep us going. Most days my sisters and I would come home from school to find an assortment of healthy and delicious treats to keep us satisfied till dinner. She would often put notes in our lunches, little encouraging messages in attempt to lift spirits during another boring school day. A lot of high school kids would probably be embarrassed finding a note in their lunch from mommy dearest, but not me. Discovering a scribbled “I love you, babe” on a small piece of paper in the bottom of my bag helped me get through several particularly miserable days.
So thank you marm for:
- Passing down your bizarre love of canned green beans. I eat those bad boys straight from the can, thanks to you
- Being the person I call when I need honest and heartfelt advice, even if it’s not easy to give
- For sometimes taking Isaac’s side when I call to tell you a story about how he pissed me off. My personal favorite? “Courtney, you need to go home and unlock the door for Isaac. Don’t keep him locked out of the house just because you are mad. You are overreacting and he is always so sweet to you.” Haha, oops! Isaac should be thankful for your advice, too!
- Leaving me voice mails simply saying “Hi hunnybun, just calling to say I love you!”
- Teaching my by example how to properly raise children
- Not disowning me when I was a child and would peel the wallpaper off the bathroom wall every day regardless of how many spankings you delivered. It just felt so good to peel that fresh, floral paper!
- Not disowning me when I was a pre-teen and you discovered “I hate you mom and dad for not letting me go skiing, I HATE YOU BOTH” ferociously written in my journal
- Not disowning when I was a teenager and you found cigars and empty beer cans in my car
- Ugh, how did you put up with me?! And what high-schooler smokes cigars?
- Teaching me the importance and proper usage of sarcasm at a very young age
- Deciding to quit the homeschooling after kindergarten to enroll me in public school. I’m pretty sure adding the home schooled label to a girl with a plethora of allergies, inhalers, and fanny packs would have been devastating.
- Giving me your blue eyes and almost all of my facial expressions
- Not calling me out when I was in third grade and failed the eye exam on purpose just so I could get glasses. Hey, they seemed cool. You knew I had 20/20 vision, but bought me a pair anyway.
- Accepting me, even if you may not always agree with all of my decisions
- Urging me to take a break from school in order to pursue my dream of dolphin training. It led to so many fulfilling and once in a lifetime memories. It allowed me to meet Isaac!