I am not an emotionally demonstrative person. For me personally, it is much easier to show someone how I feel through my actions as opposed to my words. However, if anyone deserves a public display of affection, it’s my mum. So I will attempt to put into words what I know I could never articulate in person. Mum, this is for you…
I see you
You have always been Mum. With the blindness and self centeredness of a child, I wasn’t truly able to see you as more than my parent until I myself became a mother. Now I see you; as a woman with a husband that you love and still have fun with; as a woman with friends who knew you as a teenager; as a woman with interests and hobbies that feed your soul; as someone who has a life that goes beyond the walls of our family home. I appreciate you all the more for it.
I can only imagine how hard it must have been to work a full time job, have two young kids and still study for a degree. I’m sure you had a ton of Mum guilt for taking the time away from us to study or for sending me to daycare but I want you to know that I don’t remember any of that. I do remember long, lazy school holidays with you. I remember trips to the library and coming home with more books than I could carry. I remember my sunburnt nose every Jan from weekend trips to the beach (was sunblock not a thing then??). I am so impressed at what you managed to achieve. I actually cannot for the life of me comprehend how you juggled so many balls and knowing you, you probably made it look easy.
I am humbled by you
I cannot recall you ever telling me to stop talking or making me feel as if I was getting on your nerves. This could be because I have a terrible memory but I think it’s most likely because you have the patience of a Saint. I yelled at your granddaughter the other day (I know, I’m in big trouble now) because she just would not stop talking AT me while I was sorting something out for her sister. I could hear the annoyance and irritation in my tone and I know she must have heard it too and it made me realize that I don’t remember hearing that in your tone for general day to day stuff. When I misbehaved yes, but not for the kind of things that I lose my patience with on a daily basis. I know I will never be as calm and patient as you are, my personality is much more dominant and impatient but you have set the benchmark and I am constantly striving to be better. To be like you.
Thank you for being so approachable. I could talk to you for hours and have always felt that way. My friends always found it hilarious that I would tell you stuff that they would never tell their own mums but it never occurred to me to keep it from you (except the boy stuff coz I would have got my butt kicked, haha!). I hope to have the same open relationship with my girls.
Thank you for not hiding your pride in me. It is your confidence in me that makes me think that maybe I can do amazing things. I’m sure I have disappointed you a number of times but I have never felt that disappointment for very long. It’s as if you wipe the slate clean and I get to start fresh. It’s a wonderful feeling.
Thank you for not trying to change me. I know I’m an odd duck. Amongst other quirks, I’m antisocial and my sense of humor raises a number of questions but you don’t make me feel any less for it. You see me through ‘Mother’s Eyes’ and it’s a really wonderful thing.
You are an amazing mum and the most doting grandmother. Thank you for everything you have sacrificed for Lee and I, for all the late nights and early mornings, for the best school and work lunches, for staying up when I needed to study so that I didn’t fall asleep, for the movie dates and shopping sprees. For everything.
I love you Mum. More than you will ever know and more than I can put into words.