Elizabeth commented on my last post about what she remembers about her mom growing up. And that sparked an idea. What do *I* remember?
My mom and I were actually having this conversation the other day. I don't remember how we got started on it, but we were reminiscing about things.
I don't want to sit here and say my parents were poor. That wasn't the case. But my mom WAS frugal. I had my fair share of hand-me-downs and garage sale clothes. And ya know what? You would never have known that. They were still in great condition by the time they got to me, and still in good condition when we passed them along to someone else. By example, my mom has taught me to be frugal. I also learned the value of a dollar. It wasn't easy for us to just go out and replace something. We had to take care of what we were given.
My mom was one of many moms in the neighborhood to stayed at home. Ok, she did Home Interiors and was gone on Tuesdays for meetings. But for the most part, she was home. I remember the year she was Cookie Mom for Girl Scouts. We had cookies EVERYWHERE! And we couldn't eat any of them, which was probably the worst part. Or the year she was PTA President. I got roped into helping with events. She helped out at my school on Fridays. Ooohhhh. Fridays were the BEST! The elementary school I went to sold popcorn on Fridays. And red vines. Every so often, we would get caramel corn or the oh so special rainbow popcorn!
I remember coming home from school and getting an after school snack. Maybe it was cookies she had baked during the day, or fruit we had helped pick at the grocery store. Dinner was always at home and at the dinner table. Unless it was a Friday (then it might have been pizza and a movie), a birthday, or dad was out of town. I remember being sick (clear into my teens and even my pregnancies with my boys) and my mom tucking me into HER bed. Because we all know, mommy's bed is way better than our bed when we are sick.
What I don't remember is the money struggles my parents had. I guess some part of me knew they had them but not on a deep understanding level. We never went hungry (even if we couldn't get Lucky Charms or Oreos), we never went naked (so what if they came from a garage sale or the clearance rack), and we never missed out on anything we wanted to do at school. My mom always found a way to take care of us. I don't remember being punished. I know I was, no child is perfect. But sitting in my room in time out (which was fine with me, I could read then) is not what comes to mind when I think of my mom.
She has always known how to comfort me when someone breaks my heart. She has been there to listen to my dreams, my hopes, my wishes. I can picture her smile on the day I graduated from High School. Or hear the joy in her voice when I called to tell her I was pregnant with my first. The love she radiated when I got married. Or the tears she cried holding her first grandson.
This is the mom I remember. This is the mom I want to be for my kids. One day, when I grow up, I want to be like you Mom.