My mother gave me thick hair and blue eyes, fair skin and freckles. She taught me to write my name and how to bake. She made me a reader and lover of books. She passed on her appreciation for collections and started a few of mine. She gave me her sense of colors and taught me how high to hang a picture. She drove me to soccer practices and swim meets and paid for lessons of all sorts. She taught me good table manners just in case I was invited to eat at the White House. She let me have the yellow carpet in my room when she really wanted the green. She bought me the Izod shirts and Tretorn sneakers but would never let me have clogs. She made braided ribbon barrettes for my hair and bought me beads for friendship pins. She always makes sure there is an apple pie on Thanksgiving because it’s my favorite. She took me skiing at age 3 and pretty much every year after that. She drove me to college and didn’t cry until she was on her way home. She kissed my scraped knees and wiped away my tears. She cooked my favorite meal on my birthdays. She bought me my first sewing machine. She still has a sweater I knit her although it is really way too big. She was there when I gave birth to my babies. She trusts my judgment although she sometimes disagrees. She is sensitive and thoughtful, kind and caring, generous and gracious. She is beautiful inside and out. She supports me. She has loved me every day for the last 38 years. And I know it. I always have.
I hope my kids know I feel the same way about them. Because I gave them thick hair, blue eyes and freckles. I correct their spelling and make them hold their pencils correctly. I let them stay up reading because they love their books. I let them crack the eggs and measure the flour. I add to their bottle cap collections. I encourage them to draw and then hang up their drawings. I sit through volleyball practices and watch their swim meets. I tell them to chew with their mouths closed and to put their napkins on their laps. I’m repainting their rooms because they want a change. I let them wear clogs. I have pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving because that is their favorite. I kiss scrapes and wipe away tears, too. I take them skiing. I cried when they left kindergarten, but didn’t let them see me. I go to California Pizza Kitchen and Red Robin on their birthdays because that is what they choose. I rethread the toy sewing machine 15 times in 20 minutes. I keep all their love notes. I want to be there when they have their babies. I respect their differences although I sometimes don’t understand. I have loved them from the moment they were born.
Being a mother is a precious gift. I feel blessed to have learned from the best.