“Mothers and their children are in a category all their own. There’s no bond so strong in the entire world. No love so instantaneous and forgiving.”
~~ Gail Tsukiyama
When it comes to counting my blessings, when it comes to seeing all I have to be grateful for, the Universe decided to fill my basket to overflowing with the most amazing mothers in the world.
First and foremost the mother that gave me life.
God, of all the mothers in the world You gave me the one most perfect for me. To express my gratitude in the little essay is really impossible. The blessings are too many. The list is too long, too infinite. But I can say this….
My mother let me and my brother grow up thinking that we were the two most special boys on this planet. She always put us first. I believe she still does. Looking back I see now that we didn’t have much money when I was a kid. My parents decided that until we both were in school she would be a stay-at-home mother. So she would always be there for us. So we had the income of a Marine father. I know now that wasn’t all that much.
And yet we lacked for nothing! We always had enough! We had food and clothes and a color television when our neighbors didn’t. We had incredible birthday parties, themed, and she decorated out cakes. They were incredible! On our birthday, she would give the other brother one gift so we didn’t feel left out. Imagine that! We had home made Halloween costumes that were spectacular. None of those cheap-looking K-Mart ones for us. These could have been used on a movie set.
Every year when we were living in California she took us to Disneyland. That wasn’t cheap. I don’t know where the funds came from but she did it. Wait. I know where they came from. She did without. That’s how.
When I was really little I got this really bad earache. My dad was overseas doing a tour of some kind and she heard that cigeretts smoke blown in the ear and then stopped up with a piece of cotton would help. The heat I suppose? My mother didn’t smoke. She couldn’t stand it any more than I do now. Yet she got a cigarette and breathed it in my ear. Anything to help her son.
She helped us with home work.
She was a Den Mother when I was in Cub Scouts.
When we moved—which was often because my day was a Marine—we would take these circuitous routes driving to our new homes so that we could see Yellow Stone National Park and the Grand Tetons and Mount Rushmore and Flintstone Village and Dinosaur National Park and probably even the Biggest Ball of String in the World. I don’t remember that last one but if it was on the way I know we went there.
I think of all that she has done and gone through and how when she was at wits end she still found a way to give me one more hug. That’s pretty amazing.
I know she was exactly thrilled when I came out at thirty. Her religion tells her that it’s wrong. She is a literal believer in her Bible. Yet she has never changed her love of me and has accepted the two partners in my life as sons, never forgetting birthdays and giving them her love.
When I bought my home she gave me a very nice amount of money to help with the down payment and even paid to have central air and a new furnace put into the house. When had one of those huge asbestos filled octopus things in the basement. So not only was there the cost of all that, but the cost of having asbestos removed from the house!
To her money was simply something materialize the things needed in life. But more than that. The dreams in life. I went with her to Israel and Egypt!
I love my mother with all my heart.
And then there is the mother of my child. Not your usual woman. She was one of the most unique people I have ever met. Loud, opinionated, determined and different, but truly love, love, love. She was a lioness watching out for what was hers and I am so grateful that she was the mother of my only child. She was funny, incredibly intelligent, understanding, and very talented. She could sew, do incredible needle work, write and more. We met at a science fiction convention, became best friends, then tried to be more because I was so afraid I was going to hell for being gay. I loved her more than any woman ever (besides Mom of course) and tried to make it work. When I couldn’t be “straight” any more she had one huge screaming fit—then within fifteen minutes calmed down quite suddenly and hugged me and told me I had done the best I could and we remained friends until her passing last year. I will miss her until my own last breath.
Then there is my husband’s mother. She treats me like her son. Through her I have yet another family. I know she loves me and she goes to great lengths to prove it. Why just last week when I was in Brookfield (the town R grew up in and where she still lives) she made me her deviled eggs—wonderful! And she never forgets my birthday, always sends me a card, and for Christmas always winds up making some funny or awesome present. Last year it was a stripper teddy bear including real dollar bills stuffed into her g-string! I loved it. I am so fortunate to have this wonderful sweet lady in my life.
Finally I have to mention my ex mother-in-law. I miss her dearly. When she was a part of my life, it was her love and support and mothering that gave me the courage to come out to my own family. I knew that if that family rejected me, I had her and hers. Not too long before her passing I saw her and she pulled me tight and whispered in my ear, “You’ll always be my favorite.” I can never forget that.
So many mothers! And that’s not even counting all the incredible women who through the years who have mothered me.
But of course, who I really must play homage to is the woman who raised me. My mother.
I love you with all my heart Mom. I hope I do you proud. You gave me my life, my spirit, my moral foundation, and so much more. I am indebted to you. Thank you, Mom. For being You.