There is a depth here that I want to reach. A reality I want to touch without pretense or schmaltz. But it feels like it’s all been said. Hallmark has cornered the market on telling your mother how much you love her.
But it’s not all storks and flowers, is it? It’s grittier than that. More like breathing and running and a hand steady on your shoulder, a voice whispering in your ear, “you can do this.”
It’s a washrag in one hand and car keys in the other. It’s picking me up when it’s my fault I’ve fallen and never saying so, because she knows I already know. It’s watching her be a woman and modeling myself after her, even as I rebel, because she is the best example I know. It’s thinking, “I want my girls to be like her, because she is the most honorable, kindest person I know.”
It’s seeing traces of myself and her, in them, in their new sprouts coming up. It’s searching the quiet spaces in between and finding the touch of her in them. And it’s the knowledge that if I can hear her words from my mouth, I’ve spoken well.
It’s growing into a new generation, each one a new circle, overlapping the previous, connecting to the future, lessons passed down, hearts broken and healed, love shared like a family quilt added to by each successive ring. It’s giving what I’ve been given, receiving what I gave in love and yet, never losing in the bargain.
It is the jeweled links in the long chain, stronger with each new addition, leading back and forward, valuing both, clinging to neither, security and risk bound together because she provides the foundation that gives the strength to go and to stay, no matter what. It’s the definition of motherhood. That’s my mom.