Childhoods and Mothers (Mother’s Day, 2019)

Today I’m thinking about childhoods. The times I spent in front of the television playing games. The walks I went with my friends. The time I went jumping my bike in the drive way and cut up my hands… when my mom bandaged them up and I went out and did it again.

I think about the way my son always seems to do or say something that surprises me. His sense of humor, his ingenuity, his perspective, his evolving maturity.

I think about the memories that my mother shared of her childhood. The times she spent with her friends in ‘the gully’ where she grew up. Even just today when she was talking to my sister and I about how she used to help in our grandmother’s Fish Restaurant.

I think about how the mothers of today grew up. Some that played with dolls and imagined families of their own. Some that rode their bikes through town and liked to climb trees. Some that loved run through the forests and the fields. That loved to horses. That loved bugs and butterflies. Some that did any combination of some or all of these things and so much more.

I think about the independence that my mother sacrificed for me and siblings to have that childhood. The responsibility that she took for our lives and well being. I think about all of the hardest times, when we struggled together, when difficult decisions needed to be made, when we fought. I think of the very best of times, the road trips that became adventures, the laughter and levity we brought to each other, the times when we held each other close and knew the strength and the love of our family.

I think of how inquisitive my son is. And how readily his mom answers all of his questions. How she guides him and teaches him.

I think of my nieces and how my sister has worked so hard to support and take care of them, all while discovering her own path in this crazy life.

And I think of my own mom and the support and love she continues to provide for us even now that we’re all adults. I think about the love she has for everyone, and how easily she comes to see and care for people as if they were also her children, and how they see her the same.

Without our mothers we could never have had our childhoods. We could never have grown to enjoy the lives we know today. We would never have the warmth, the guidance, and understanding that I hope everyone reading this has been able to enjoy from their mothers. And so many mothers have had to do it all on their own, for which there is a certain tragic heroism we should recognize.

They were all children, and teenagers once themselves. And at some point, we came into the world and became the most important thing in their lives.

Today, this mothers day, I want to honor all of the mothers of the world, and especially the ones I know as my family. You are the legends that have made everything I know and love about my life possible.

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