Yesterday was my Mom’s birthday.
My Mom is one of the hardest working people I know.
She’s a nurse. A job I could never do. I faint. She doesn’t. It’s a good quality to have as a nurse.
My Mom lives on a farm with my step-father. When she isn’t working as a nurse, she is taking care of her miniature horses, her goats, the cows, and the barn kittens. She is helping saw lumber at their small saw mill. She is sewing and taking on house project after project. She is teaching Sunday school. She is working in the garden. She is in the hayfield. She is baking.
She listens to the K-Love radio station. I make fun of her for it, and always promise to burn her some CDs of better music. Sometimes it’s southern gospel on the radio. I remember mornings of coming downstairs sleepy eyed into the kitchen and Mom would be cooking breakfast and singing, “My cup runneth over so I’ll drink from my saucer”. Or something like that.
I used to think that we were nothing alike. Mom could care less about shellac manicures or the latest eye liner trend. I could go into debt in Sephora alone. She’s never colored her hair. I don’t ever NOT color mine. She is content on the farm, and I long for adventure.
But we are more alike than I ever thought.
I have her laugh. I have the shape of her face. She taught me how to be content. She taught me how satisfying the outdoors can be. She taught me that family comes first. Somewhere along the way, I have found her love for the kitchen and bake when I need to relax too. We both will drive over an hour for the good coconut ice cream cones in the summer. Because let’s face it, it’s coconut. She taught me how to be a mother, long before I even am one. I love children like she does.
Mom is always up first. Before anyone. Sitting in her bathrobe by the big kitchen wood stove with her bible. Every morning.
I am thankful.
For the lessons, for the example, for the honesty, for the integrity, and yes, even the gas money to make it home when needed.
For the time you grounded me for lying about wearing red lipstick to school in the fourth grade. For the time you told me that purple suede mini skirt was in fact too short to wear to the school dance. For the time you gave up on teaching me how to change a tire and just bought me an AAA Platinum membership instead. For the times you took me shopping and spent money you didn’t have, just so I could have the same brand of sweater everyone else did in my class. For all the afternoons you forced me to play outside, building forts and riding my bike instead of watching TV. For the thousands of dollars spent at the orthodontist. For the Easter basket every year in college. For dragging me to church when I cried.
For being my number one fan.
I thank you. I am so grateful to call you my Mom.
Happy Birthday Mom. I love you.