If I were to describe my mom, I would probably say she is the best. And I wish I could give you a better description but that’s really all there is to it. She’s the best hugger, the best cuddler, the best chef, and the best inspiration. She has the best smile, the best laugh, and the best advice.
She told me that sexy is not what you wear, it’s how you wear it. She told me God will never give us more than we can handle and that this, too, shall pass. She told me girls are vicious and agreed with me when I said self-centered Jewish boys are much easier to find than the nice ones. She told me not to worry too much about my weight in college and that it’s okay if I end up not working in the field of my major.
If I turn into half the woman my mother is I’ll consider myself lucky.
When my brother Mike wanted to be a soccer player, my mom became the mini van driving soccer mom sitting on the sideline of every single game in rain or shine…snow or heat wave. When my brother Scott found a passion for music, she became the cool mom who tolerated the amps hooked up in his room and the shortlived band that practiced in our garage. When I decided I wanted to be a “triple threat actress,” she signed me up for dance classes, vocal lessons, and became the stage mom who dropped everything in her schedule to drive me into the city for auditions.
Those times in high school when the girls were vicious as she had warned and my heart was broken, my mom gave me space – a thing every high schooler could always use more of. Sometimes she would come to my room with some tea and a homemade cookie and ask if I wanted to talk. If I did,
she would sit with me until I felt better. If I didn’t, she would walk away closing the door behind her. Perhaps I didn’t say it much then so I will say it now: Thanks, Mom.
When I broke both my legs in a snowboarding accident three years ago, my mom became an advocate for handicap accessibility at every restaurant, public bathroom, dressing room, and store we went to. She sat with me at 3 in the morning when the painkillers gave me insomnia and still got up for work in the morning.
My mom became a hero when she turned the family business around. She had spent over a decade working as a certified personal trainer. She had all her clients in the morning and then spent the afternoons going for runs on the boardwalk, reading books, and cooking gourmet dinners.
But when my dad came to her one day saying that the interior design business that had been in our family for over 85 years was coming to an end, my mom dropped her sublime afternoon routine and turned the entire business around. For the next year, my mom continued to see clients in the morning, while cleaning up the showroom, organizing their finances, and becoming a self-taught interior designer in the afternoons.
She has since stopped working as a personal trainer and is now working as the store’s only decorator and book keeper and has heroically brought in enough work to not only pull the family business out of debt but even start making a profit again.
Throughout my 20 years on this earth, I’ve seen my mom transform herself into whomever our family needed her to be, always with the biggest smile on her face and it has only been in recent years that I discovered a new quality of my mom: a friend. And yes, like all other things about her, she is the best at it.
Sign up to receive ShriverReport.org newsletters directly to your inbox!