Mother's Day has given my some time to think about moms. I love being a mom. Seriously, I could not even think of a better job to do. Not even having to taste test M&M's or chocolate chip ice-cream all day would be a better job. I simply just love being a mom. So, I have been wondering how a person such as myself who did not like babysitting and was not really "comfortable" around little kids when I was younger turned into a person who loves being a mom. I would say it has to do with the people that came before me.
Now, before I start, do not get me wrong. Everybody has flaws and no one's life is perfect. I am taking the best of each "mom" here and how they influenced me for the best.
My mom's mom, also known as Nanny or Bernice was part of my life until my mid twenties. I do not often remember her smiling, but I do remember little things that make me think she cared about us a lot. She and my grandfather had a house on Lake Winnepesauke in NH. She always made sure that there was a little present on our beds when we arrived. For me it was usually a bag of M&Ms and a Trixie Beldon or Nancy Drew book. Sometimes it was comic books. For lunch she would make us Peanut Butter and Fluff sandwiches, with chips and Mountain Dew. She always baked congo bars or chocolate cake before we came, too. One time when I was sick at her house, she made a pulley system from my bed to the door with a cup on it. She would put m&ms in it and I would pull it over to the bed.
My dad's mom, also known as Grandma or Eleanor, was also around until my mid twenties. Where my Nanny lacked in emotion, my Grandma made up for it. She was always smiling. She would take us bowling and then we would take her on a mystery ride on the way home. How she knew how to find our house without GPS is a miracle because we would take her all over town. She loved Maine as much as me. We could sit on the beach for hours playing games, body surfing or tanning. One time when I was in college and she and I were at our house in Maine before the rest of my family came for the summer, we had a bad thunder and lightening storm in the middle of the night. I was petrified and sat on a stool in the middle of the family room ready to run when the nearest tree came down. She somehow knew I was sitting there and came out to reassure me and help me see the beauty in the storm.
My mom is the mom everyone wanted growing up. She was at all of our games, recitals etc. She was the mom to go to for chocolate chip cookies. She volunteered in the school, She was happy to have our friends to our house. She was and is always good for a hug and an 'I told you so'. She did not give us everything we wanted growing up, but helped us with solutions for how to get it. We spent every summer in Ogunquit, Maine with her while my dad came up on weekends. We all spent every winter weekend at Waterville Valley ski racing. She did not like to ski, but liked being there to warm our toes and give us a good lunch before sending us back out for afternoon training. She still is our biggest cheerleader and is now her grandchildrens' biggest cheerleader. She also has a great sense of a humor and a laugh that K can imitate to a tee. She has certainly taught me how to find the humor in every situation, good or bad.
I often feel badly that I cannot give my girls everything that they want, that I cannot do more for them. I feel badly that we cannot go on great vacations or that I cannot buy them all that they want or deserve. However, looking back on my memories of my role models, I see that that is not necessarily what's most important. Don't get me wrong, money helps, but in this case it is certainly not everything. I did not write about the expensive things that each bought me, I did not write about jetting off across the world with them, I did not write about them buying me a brand new Mercedes when I turned 16, mostly because those things did not happen. The things that immediately came to my memory was the compassion, the love, the hugs and the caring. The just being available and making me believe that I was important and cherished was what counted. I only hope that one day, my girls can see that this empathy, love, caring is the one gift I can give them that does not cost a thing, but is the most sincere. So, I will end with a big thank-you to my role models and an even bigger thank-you to B and K for giving me the opportunity to have the best job in the whole world.