It's weird for me to say that. "My mom is fifty." It just doesn't seem right. Fifty feels old to me and my mom is anything but old. From her appearance to her ability to go beer for beer with me at the bar...she is most certainly not old. She also hasn't chopped all of her hair off yet and that right there speaks volumes since apparently that's the right of passage into the gOLDen years...
There aren't enough words in the world or enough ways to string those words together to explain just how much she truly means to me. When I think about trying to do it my mind goes all sorts of crazy. There's just too much to say, too many amazing things she's done, too many characteristics that make her the best mother ever. So I'm not going to think about how these words sound together, or if any of them make grammatical sense, or if the way my mind pieces them together makes me sound like the most random egg in the carton. I'm just going to let my mind go "all sorts of crazy" and write to my mom.
There isn't a doubt in my mind that you are my hero. I have thought this since I was younger when you were able to answer the thousands of "why" questions that every young child has for their parents but now that I'm older it is even more apparent. Sometimes I sit back and think about how amazing it is for you to have done all of things you did for our family. It was like you were a stay at home mom yet still worked a full time job. You did it all. Worked, transported, cleaned, educated, cooked, and most importantly loved - all at the same time. And you did it all with such ease; without ever showing signs of struggle or stress and rarely ever asking for help.
It's not the bigger things that astonish me though. Most every mother can love their children wholeheartedly and unconditionally. That's the easy part of your job. I mean, come on, I wasn't too hard to love. If you ask me I was pretty perfect minus that whole trying to get me to wear pants as a little girl thing and trying to get me to sleep in my own bed and not be afraid of the monsters ordeal. Instead, it's all of the little things you never let slip through the cracks that I look back on and think "Wow, how did she do it all?". From something as simple as remembering to pick up another box of Rice Chex on the way home when you knew that I had finished them that morning to knowing exactly where that misplaced item was, you excelled at the small stuff just as easily as you did caring for us.
There's one big ticket item that will probably remain the most important part of our relationship and that's how we never fight. Like ever. I remember always hearing my friends scream at their moms and say how much they hated them and how annoying they were. But for me? Never. It never even crossed my mind while I was growing up. I look back now and realize that this was probably because you are just the most laid-back and chill mother on the planet. I don't think there was ever a day that you told me I couldn't wear a certain outfit to school, or a time that you were nosy and tried to meddle in my business, or an instance that you pushed me to do something I didn't want to do. You let me be me and let me grow on my own all while still remaining ever so close enough to still guide me whenever I needed it. This has always left me with a deep respect for you. We tread lightly around things if they ever would annoy us. We communicate in a way that solves a conflict before anything ever actually became a conflict. It's pretty awesome and unheard of among many other mother-daughter relationships.
I have so many happy memories growing up because of you:
-Dancing in the dining room of our first house to "Achy Breaky Heart" and in the living room to the Phil Collins "You'll Be In My Heart".
-Feeding every fish stick you ever made me to the dogs under that little yellow plastic table.
-You standing by my side and watching a stupid princess play at Disney World because I was too afraid to go on the Tower of Terror with Dad and Broski.
-You reading the Box Car Children books to us every night before bed.
-Getting to sleep in your bed whenever Dad was away on business trips.
-Always being able to sneak licks of the butter and sugar mixture while you made banana bread.
-Building mazes of blocks for the ferrets to run around in
-Consistently having the BEST stocked pantry of candy and snack food.
-Letting me and Chris watch all the movies we could have ever wanted and not being one of those moms that thought TV rotted our brains.
-Eating orange sherbert and watching The Munsters.
-Allowing us to waste a good amount of baking supplies to mix with mud in the backyard just so that we could "cook" ourselves.
-Camping trips, and amusement parks, and cruises.
I mean I could probably rattle things off until I myself am fifty so I'll stop there.
I have told you before that many people say they dread turning into their mothers but I welcome it with open arms. I already find myself saying and doing things that send me straight back to you. And I hope like hell whenever I become a mom I can do even half as good of a job as you did with me. Because even half of what you've done would still be more than any child could ever hope to get from a mom. You truly are wonderful. I would be lost without you. My life would absolutely crumble and shatter around me. Though I don't talk to you every day or see you nearly as much as I would like to there's hands down no way I would be able to get through life without your constant presence. I mean, who would buy me boxes of Alphabits and gummy vitamins? Obviously I still need you...
As great as my childhood was I am so very excited for what the future holds for us. There are still so many chapters for me to open in my book of life and I know that because you'll be by my side they will be all that more special. You'll be there to bring me back to reality when I want a ten thousand dollar wedding dress. You'll be there to calm my nerves before I walk down the aisle. You'll be there when I become a mom myself. You'll be there when I send you ten thousand and one pictures of your grand kids' duck butts. You'll be there to give me advice on all of the things I still have yet to learn. You'll be there for all the other struggles and triumphs along the way. And I'll also be with you for wherever the next fifty years takes you. Even if that's in a camper traveling around the United States because remember...
"Home is whenever I'm with you".
Your brown eyed little girl
Happy Birthday Mom - you deserve the world!