Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Woman in her Thirties Learns from her Mom

Today is my first Mother's Day and my birthday (33 what what!). How does a woman in her thirties celebrate such a momentous double-day? She sleeps in (because 8:30am now qualifies as sleeping in), does several loads of laundry, takes her baby out to buy flowers, and waits for her jet-lagged husband to wake up from his nap and make gwottles. Not exactly the lap of luxury, but better than a kick in the pants, as my Mom would say.

Which has gotten me thinking about my Mom, and all the things she's said over the years. Here are a few that come to mind on this rainy Pleasantville Mother's Day:

1. Take care of your teeth
My Mom cannot watch TV without commenting on so-and-so's teeth. I don't think she listened to a single word Obama said during his campaign for Presidency, that's how overcome she was by his beautiful white smile. Lesson learned, Mom.

2. Don't be easily impressed
I remember once telling my Mom about a friend's parent who had just bought a BMW. 'A B-M-W', I remember emphasizing, when her face remained blank. 'So what?' she said. 'Am I supposed to think he's better than me or something?'

3. Climb
My poor Mom has suffered from arthritis for as long as I can remember, but a few years ago was introduced to an infusion treatment called Remicaid. This stuff has worked so well for her that she came to visit me in Beijing and we climbed the Great Wall of China together. I know women in their twenties for whom this would be too difficult, but she did it. And she may or may not have developed a crush on this guy:4. Don't avoid cliches... like the plague
My Mom is the queen of cliche. 'Every cloud has a silver lining' is one of her favorites, with 'to each her own' a close second. My students may not be able to get away with saying something is 'easy as pie', but my Mom sure can. Somehow cliches are truer, coming from her.

5. Pray
H and I like to joke that between her Gram and my Mom, we have a direct line to God. While the jaded woman in my thirties that I am struggles every day with spirituality, my Mom has never once doubted God and his Capital P Plan. I envy that more than she knows.

6. Celebrate...
...the right way. Gift giving was never a priority in my house, and for that I am very grateful. Today, right now, I'm enjoying a few more minutes of Mother's Day quiet. I'm relishing in my birthday and the health and happiness the past year has brought me. I'm thankful for my life, my family, my friends, and my Punkeroni:And I'm thankful, as always, for my Mom.


  1. Awww! Love your Mom!!! And Love that Baby!!!

    Happy Birthday lady! I'm thinking of you today!

  2. Happy Mothers Day and Happy Birthday!!! Hope your day has been wonderful!

  3. Happy Mother's Day and Happy Birthday! What a great post about Mom! I love that picture of Anna!

  4. Happy birthday & Happy Mother's Day! Oh, and about that gift giving thing, yours is going to be a little late, obviously, so I'm really glad that's not a huge priority for you. :-P

    That photo of Anna makes me smile every time. She looks so grown UP sitting there all by herself!

  5. Holy cow! When did that baby start sitting up on her own like that?! Happy, happy first Mother's Day and happy birthday! Love you!

  6. Happy Mom's Day!

    I love the pick of Anna.

  7. Happy Mother's Day and Happy Birthday! I think I remember that friend with the BMW...I was impressed too;) Such a sweet post about Mom... How can you not be thankful for that sweet little Anna face!