The Casting Dock

We’ve got a birthday in the house, y’all!

What is it with mothers and their whole being incredible thing? I mean, I’m sure there are some stinkers out there (we are all fallible and this is a crazy broken world), but generally speaking–moms have this whole sacrificial, unconditional love thing going on. Or at least mine does.

It baffles me. I’ve asked my mom countless times if just sometimes, on occasion, she wishes, even just slightly in a passing moment that she never had me or my brothers. (And I’m being completely serious here. I genuinely wonder this.) You know, so that she could just have her own life and be rid of the responsibility of the three of us. I gotta be honest–we have not been a smooth ride. In fact, we’ve been such a bumpy ride at times that I can’t fathom how she couldn’t have had at least a fleeting wish to smite us out of existence: to avoid all that pain, regain all that time and energy exerted, and replenish quite a chunk of change in that pocket of hers. She of course says that she never has. Like she’d tell me anyway though, right? That would be like cardinal mother sin, ranking just above that time she told me I had gotten fat. I just don’t understand how it couldn’t have crossed her mind though. Let me reiterate again–bumpy, buckle-up-or-you-might-get-bucked-out-of-the-car ride

But that’s the thing with my mom–despite some hard knocks in life and some very challenging years with three struggling kids, she never wavered in her devotion to us. I have never questioned for a single second of my life that I was not only a priority to her, but the priority, that I mattered. I don’t understand how someone can be so sacrificial. She says it’s because I don’t have kids yet and once I do, I’ll understand, but I don’t know. I worry that I won’t love my kids with the same depth of love that she showered upon us. It may “come naturally” and be incomprehensible “love at first sight,” but I’ve learned enough in my short years to know that love of that caliber, self-abandoning love, is a choice, not simply a guaranteed by-product of shoving 8 lbs of flesh outta the birth canal. My mom made that choice day after day and (tough) year after (tough) year and for that I am so thankful. My mother has unquestionably made me the person I am today. She gave me a firm foundation to steady myself upon as I felt out this thing called life and sifted out my own identity. But most impressive of all is that throughout it all she remained not only strong, but humorous, joyful, optimistic, light-hearted, flexible, and perhaps, most notably, explanatory (right, Mom?).

And for the record, of course she didn’t actually tell me that I had gotten fat, simply that I was more womanly now. Basically the same thing in nice-mother-speak

But seriously, Mom–you know I think you are incredible and inspirational (and I really wouldn’t be offended if just sometimes you daydream about a life without the burden of kids. really. I would if I was you.)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Please stick around for lots more, you spring chicken, you. (But when you do go, remember that I’ve got dibs on the Maine house…*wink, *wink)

5 comments

1 bryan { 02.08.11 at 9:43 pm }

Happy B-Day Noche!!!!

Love ya!!!

Can’t wait for 70!!!

You look like you’re 45!!!

Love ya, Noche!!!

Let’s have a good year!!!

I love my Noche!!!

2 k&c's mom { 02.08.11 at 10:28 pm }

Beautifully written, Lisa! Your mom is one of my heroes. She handles life with grace, wit and generosity. Happy Birthday, K!

3 Mama Logan { 02.09.11 at 7:27 am }

Happy Birthday, Kathy!! Lisa – Your Mom speaks the truth! There has NEVER been a time – not even “slightly in a passing moment” – that as a mom, I wish I never had kids. It’s just impossible to do! Instead, you can’t imagine your life WITHOUT your children – regardless of the bumpy time you may be going through. You just always seem to remember the WONDERFUL times – the bumpy times just fade into the sunset.

4 Rhonda { 02.09.11 at 2:19 pm }

Lisa, you pegged your mom so well. She is all of the wonderful things you listed. One of the things I love about my good buddy Kathleen is her sense of humor. No one makes me laugh more than her. She is generous to a fault, a faithful friend through good and bad, compassionate, a great story teller, she knows no stranger and puts all at ease, she loves her children more than any of them will ever comprehend, and she is genuine in her faith. You are so blessed to have her as your mom as you already so eloquently stated.

5 Terri { 02.11.11 at 9:37 am }

What a wonderful tribute to a beautiful Mom! Please send this to Natalie and remind her that my birthday is September 15th! wink wink

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