My mom and I are very different. I love books, she loves TV. I think dogs are people, she'd rather never touch one if possible. Her idea of fun is dressing up and going to a fancy restaurant, mine is a hike in the mountains or a day at the beach. You get the picture. Sometimes I think we are complete opposites in just about everything.
And yet, maybe because she's my mother and I'm her daughter we only see perfection in each other.
Not recently, but she's mentioned that she wishes I'd get a "real" job rather than be a writer - however, she's convinced I'm the best author that ever lived. She tells me I'm a better cook than she is (I'm not); I'm the best mother ever (I'll share that title with her); and the list goes on - sometimes to an embarrassing extreme. And she believes all this, not because any of it is true, but I think because she sees me through that mother's lens that erases all the faults and only sees the good.
And to me, she's my inspiration. I'm forever amazed at all she has accomplished in her life, and by the incredible strength and determination she pulls from somewhere inside herself. Maybe it's because she lost her own mother when she was only 9-years-old and had to learn to be tough at a young age, I don't know. But at 74, she's still telling her children what to do, taking care of grandchildren, taking yoga and belly-dancing classes. She was doing marathons in her sixties and attending rock concerts. She had the strength to go through a major divorce in her fifties knowing that she would have no way to support herself, and that as an Argentine woman it would be frowned upon. All this in the second half of her life. In my office I have a picture of her on a motorcycle when she was in her teens and have heard stories of how she stood in front of tanks when the military dictatorship threatened the citizens in the streets of Argentina. When I asked about this, she laughed and said it was fun. Fun? I would have been scared to death. I also often question if I would have had the nerve to move to a foreign country where I didn't speak the language or know anyone, like she did.
My mother is soft-spoken, and sweet, and doesn't appear strong at all. But she is. And I'm so grateful that I've had the chance to learn from her and thankful that she's my mom.
Love you, Mom! Happy Mother's Day.
I would love to year about your moms and their stories. Let's celebrate our mothers.