There are certain things that stand out in a person’s mind. It is funny what you choose to remember. I remember there were so many times growing up, that I would look at my mom and simply smile with admiration. I remember the exact moment I sat on her bed as she was brushing her teeth, and Ms. America was on TV. I asked her why she was not on the TV for the pageant. She blushed and laughed it off, but my little five year old self did not see what was so funny. I told her she was the most beautiful woman in the world. I meant it. To me, those other beauty queens did not stand a chance against my mom. Twenty years later, she is still the most beautiful person I have ever known.
(My favorite pic of us).
My mom raised the three of us as a single mother. The four of us made a team. She worked overtime every weekend, made us dinner, chauffeured us around, and let me cuddle up next to her when it was time for bed. I know there were struggles....now. But back then, I would have never known. She never showed how hard she worked or how tired she might have been. To me, I had the perfect childhood. I was a happy baby and a happy child. I had my mom, my sissy, and my brother, and that was all that mattered. We would pick apples from the backyard and make apple pies. We would go feed the ducks at the lake. There was not one morning when she dropped me off for school and did not tell me how much she loved me, and I could feel it in the way she hugged me close to her. She has loved me unconditionally. Because of her, I understand how deep a love can be. She is the one constant throughout my life. She was there to comfort me when other people who should have been there were not. When someone disappointed me, all she had to do was wrap her arms around me. With the comfort of her love, I knew I was okay, because I had her...so it didn’t matter who was not there. Aside from a happy childhood filled with laughter and love, she has given me much more. She has given me strength by showing me the true example of what strength is. She makes me believe in myself. She is always there pushing me to the top, and showing me that I am capable of things I did not see possible. More than anything, my mom is selfless. She always put us first. Now that I am older, I realize how much she really gave up for us. She gave up going out, spending time with other adults, and alone time. She gave that up to give us her everything. This never went unrecognized. I am forever blessed because of this.
My mother has worked full time/ over time/and TOO much for TOO long! Not only is she turning 60 today, she is also retiring. My mom is the type of person who is a planner. She has a strict schedule, and always fills her day with constant work. I am not exaggerating. She works all day at her day job, and then comes home and works on our books, and is the organization behind LeLe. I can not even begin to count how many times I have tried to tell her to “Relax.”, “Chill Out.” “Do not freak out.”, or “Please have a drink for me.”. She can not seem to find that calm place in her mind. I am so excited for her retirement. I know that parents are the ones who should have wishes and hopes for their children, but I have a few of my own wishes for my mom’s future.
1. ) I want to hear you laugh more. Genuine laughs and smiles. Take more time to appreciate the small moments that are passing us by so fast.
2.) Do not worry. You have done enough worrying for long enough. It is now time to realize that everything will work out. It always does, and the stuff you usually worry about is not worth troubling yourself over.
3.) Travel. Travel. Travel. I know you give me trouble about how much I travel. But see the world, and anything that you have dreamed of seeing. No more excuses that you “have to work.”
4.) Make time for YOU! You have done enough for
us. As much as I would like to say, keep doing everything for us, this time is for you. Do the things you have always wanted to do. Utilize this time, so you never look back and think to yourself, “I wish I would have....”
“A teacher affect eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.”
Mom - Thank you for being the best teacher and influence I have ever known or had. I am everything I am today because of you. I feel your love in the depths of my heart and soul. You always grew up telling me I was your angel, but we all know the truth. You are my angel. Thank you for keeping me safe in your care under your wings. I love you (to the sky). Happy 60th Birthday and Happy Retirement. Now it’s time to enjoy your life. :)
My slideshow for you, Mom. :)