Friday, May 10, 2013

If It's Not One Thing, It's Your Mother

Thought for the day:  I want my children to have all the things I couldn't afford. Then I want to move in with them.  [Phyllis Diller]

Giving birth is easy. It's like pulling a watermelon out of your nose.
This coming Sunday is Mothers' Day, so what better time to write about mothers, right?

A mother is a person who, seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never cared for pie.  [Tenneva Jordan]


Far beyond the obvious physical changes, there's something about the miracle of having a child that changes a woman forever. Suddenly, a woman who used to be able to sleep through a sonic boom wakes up on full alert every time her baby rolls over or makes the tiniest sound. After having a baby, a woman who used to be a walking fashion plate doesn't think twice about wearing wrinkled clothes stained with spit-up. And holy moley, her capacity to love expands even more than her waistline did. (Good thing, too... if it didn't, no woman would ever have more than one child!)

Suddenly, nothing is quite as sweet as those tiny little baby feet. They're downright kissable, aren't they?

There is an instinct in a woman to love most her own child— and an instinct to make any child who needs love, her own. [Robert Brault]

Then, practically overnight, babies become teenagers, and all of a sudden the little kid who used to be afraid of the dark wants to stay out half the night with his friends. The princess who didn't take her first step until she was almost a year old wants to borrow the car. They will always be the children of her heart, but more and more, they also become children of the world.

The best way to keep children at home is to make the home atmosphere pleasant — and let the air out of the tires.  [Dorothy Parker]

But the truth is, no matter how big her babies' feet get to be, they still belong to her babies. Doesn't matter if those feet belong to a teacher, a doctor, or are ensconced in a pair of combat boots. Babies, one and all.

Grown don't mean nothing to a mother. A child is a child. They get bigger, older, but grown? What's that supposed to mean? In my heart, it don't mean a thing. [Toni Morrison- Beloved]







Of all the things I've ever read about mothers, I think Erma Bombeck said it the absolute best in her essay, When God Created Mothers:

When the Good Lord was creating mothers, He was into His sixth day of "overtime" when the angel appeared and said. "You're doing a lot of fiddling around on this one."

And God said, "Have you read the specs on this order? She has to be completely washable, but not plastic. Have 180 moveable parts...all replaceable. Run on black coffee and leftovers. Have a lap that disappears when she stands up. A kiss that can cure anything from a broken leg to a disappointed love affair. And six pairs of hands."

The angel shook her head slowly and said. "Six pairs of hands.... no way."

"It's not the hands that are causing me problems," God remarked, "it's the three pairs of eyes that mothers have to have."

"That's on the standard model?" asked the angel. God nodded.

"One pair that sees through closed doors when she asks, 'What are you kids doing in there?' when she already knows. Another here in the back of her head that sees what she shouldn't but what she has to know, and of course the ones here in front that can look at a child when he goofs up and say. 'I understand and I love you' without so much as uttering a word."

"God," said the angel touching his sleeve gently, "Get some rest tomorrow...."

"I can't," said God, "I'm so close to creating something so close to myself. Already I have one who heals herself when she is sick...can feed a family of six on one pound of hamburger...and can get a nine year old to stand under a shower."

The angel circled the model of a mother very slowly. "It's too soft," she sighed.

"But tough!" said God excitedly. "You can't  imagine what this mother can do or endure."

"Can it think?"

"Not only can it think, but it can reason and compromise," said the Creator.

Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek.

"There's a leak," she pronounced. "I told You that You were trying to put too much into this model."

"It's not a leak," said the Lord, "It's a tear."

"What's it for?"

"It's for joy, sadness, disappointment, pain, loneliness, and pride."

"You are a genius, " said the angel.

Somberly, God said, "I didn't put it there.”

****


And just as our mothers always look at us as their children, a certain part of us wants to hang onto them, too. We don't want things to change. We want them to always be there, our home plate in the game of life, our constant refuge. We don't want them to grow old; we don't want them to get sick, and God knows, we don't want them to die.  But even after they do, they live on forever in our hearts.

The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.  [Honore de Balzac]

Youth fades; love droops; the leaves of friendship fall; a mother's secret love outlives them all. [Oliver Wendell Holmes]

To all of you mothers, I wish you a wonderful Mother's Day. To all of you whose mothers are still with you, cherish them, not just on Mothers' Day, but every day of the year. To those of you experiencing that heart-wrenching role reversal—  taking care of your mothers, essentially mothering your mothers, as they once took care of you, with them depending on you as you once depended on them— bless you. I know how hard it is. For those of you whose mothers are no longer with us, I know you'll be thinking of them. And as long as they live in our hearts, they're never entirely gone.




Whatever else is unsure in this stinking dunghill of a world, a mother's love is not. [James Joyce]

                             Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.



During the month of May, every comment you leave here will earn you another shot at winning a FREE autographed copy of my book Hot Flashes & Cold Lemonade. Pssst! Wanta up your chances? All ya have to do is mention my book on your blog, and it'll earn you another two chances. 

(If you're on Goodreads, I'd sure appreciate it if you tagged my book on there as one you'd like to read.)

[Images from morguefile.]






104 comments:

  1. Always thought dad's got a raw deal when you compare the mother's day verus father's day dynamic. My kids always work hard to find their mom something nice. She gets a spa treatment, gourmet meal out, or a gift certifcate to one of her favorite stores with me paying for it.

    I get yardworking equipment like a new string trimmer. I do not find any mental or physical rewards in being tied to a lawn like some serf.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Oh, absolutely. For Mothers' Day, Mom gets the present... and Dad gets the bill. For Fathers' Day, Dad gets "soap on a rope"... and the bill. Or a long-distance phone call. Collect.

      Delete
  2. Thank you. And for your next post, can I have something which doesn't fill my eyes with wussy wistful tears. Please.

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  3. I appreciate the reminder to be thankful for the wonderful mother that I have. Thanks.

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    1. You're welcome. (And a very Happy Mothers' Day to YOU, too.)

      Delete
  4. I've been a teacher for 24 years and only a mother for 16. But being a mother made me a better teacher. AND earned me the right to say: "Don't give me that look. I'm a mom. It doesn't fool me!"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And vice versa. I'll bet your teaching experience also made you a better mother.

      Delete
  5. Dang. Now I have a leak, too.

    Thanks for the lovely post. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those little leaks keep our eyes well lubricated.

      You're welcome. Glad ya liked it.

      Delete
  6. You had me laughing, smiling and crying in a matter of a few minutes. I am a mother so I am used to that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, mothers are used to roller coaster emotions. With an empty hormonal gas tank, I have no idea what fuels my emotions these days, but they're still going strong.

      Delete
  7. I love this. I have so much admiration and respect for the mothers of the world. I can't imagine that there's any tougher job on earth.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Being a good father is every bit as tough. They just don't have as good a PR department.

      Delete
  8. My baby is 6'3", 200+ lbs., and has size 15-EEEE feet. But he's still my baby.

    (Can't say I still want to kiss those feet, though.)

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    Replies
    1. HA! I know what ya mean. No amount of baby powder can improve the smell of feet once they get that size.

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  9. That was awesome, Susan. I think I'm gonna call my mom right now...

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  10. Wonderful tribute to all those multi-tasking moms out there. Happy Mother's Day to each and every one of them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those extra four hands are quite useful when it comes to multi-tasking.

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  11. Mothers sure go through the ringer
    Whether independant or clinger
    Have a tough job reeling all in
    Including the overgrown kid, if they still have him, at their bin haha

    ReplyDelete
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    1. In all the world, there is no other
      Job as joyous as that of mother.
      Even when kiddies break her heart,
      Her love for them is off the chart.

      Delete
  12. My three children are still their mother's babies, just as our two dogs are her pups. I just turn away and silently despair.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And that is just as it should be. (Don't despair... YOU'RE her baby, too!)

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    2. And I'm betting you wouldn't have it any other way.

      Delete
  13. Thank you for this beautiful post. I was my mother's baby till the day she died, and The Hurricane is forever my baby.

    Love,
    Janie

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    Replies
    1. You're welcome. You've reminded me of a book a gave each of our kids about ten years ago. It's actually a children's book, so they thought it was a little strange... until they read it.

      If I remember correctly, it's called something like "I Love You Forever." There's a poem that runs through the book:

      "I love you forever;
      I'll love you for always;
      As long as I'm living,
      My baby you'll be."

      No way anyone (with a heart) can read that book without crying.

      Delete
    2. The Hurricane's preschool teacher read that book to her class. The Hurricane loved it so much that I bought it. All I have to do is think of it, and I tear up. I think it's the most beautiful children's book ever.

      Delete
    3. Oh, good! I'm so glad you're familiar with it. A minister read it to us during a Mothers' Day service, and I don't believe there was a dry eye in the church.

      Happy Mother's Day, kiddo!

      Delete
  14. Your post made me laugh and cry. Thank you! Your blog title is most excellent also. helen

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    1. Thanks, Helen. And thanks for stopping by! I do appreciate it, and will be popping in on your blog asap. (So put on the tea kettle!)

      Delete
  15. Wow Susan, this post blew my mind and planted a fair amount of goosebumps up and down my arms. Beautiful. :)

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    1. Oh dear. You aren't getting sick, are you...???

      HA! Glad ya liked it.

      Delete
  16. Lovely post today.
    I am so a Mum because on Mothers Day I will be helping son pack up his apartment eating take-out and moving back home after graduating.
    For me it beats an overpriced brunch or dinner out any day.

    cheers, parsnip

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Glad ya liked it.

      Sounds like a pretty special Mothers' Day to me... you'll be spending it with your SON!

      Delete
  17. Lovely blog. I've always liked Erma.
    Oh--I've nominated you for a Liebster over at the nut-tree. My sincerest apoligies (for having to link up eleven blogs) and admiration (cuz your blog rocks).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Yeah, Erma was the queen.

      Thanks for the nomination! I do appreciate it, but I already received that award, so I don't reckon I'm eligible to get it again. Thanks for thinking of me, though. (Your blog rocks, too.)

      Delete
  18. Happy Mother's Day to you, Susan. This post made me tear up, beautiful as always. And I love those little baby feet! <3

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    1. Thanks. Right back atcha. Me, too... little bitty baby feet are sooooo sweet.

      Delete
  19. Happy Mother's Day!

    Gosh, my son is sixteen now. Can't believe it. Goes by fast.

    And my blog got away from me this week. Dogcatchers are out looking for it. When I get it back from the pound on Monday, I'll put up a note about your novel. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy Mothers' Day to you, too!

      You're right about how fast time goes. Our older son makes comments every now and then about how "old" he feels. I mean, really? How does he think it makes US feel to have a baby with a head full of gray hair? (What nerve!)

      Okeydoke. Thanks!

      Delete
  20. Erma Bombeck was always so witty. Happy Mothers Day to you! Baby feet are extremely kissable.

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    1. Bombeck was one of the best. Happy Mothers' Day to you, too! I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks baby feet are kissable... um, some people might think that's kinda weird.

      Delete
  21. You post today..made me smile gently
    Thank you x

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  22. A beautiful post, Susan. I'm always interested, often fascinated, by a variety of subjects, but motherhood is among the few that consistently astonish me.

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    1. Thanks, dude. Motherhood is amazing, but no less astonishing than fatherhood. All it takes is one little swimmer...

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  23. I tried to think of something clever or witty to comment, but this is all I got: well said!

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    1. Thanks. Glad ya liked it. Happy Mothers' Day!

      Delete
  24. Happy Mother's Day Susan. I loved your quotes and the truth in this post. B

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  25. Thanks. Happy Mothers' Day to you, too.

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  26. aw what a lovely lovely post :(. It made me think of my mom :(. I am not a mother yet, I contemplate this event with a lot of reserve...but eventually I'd love to have a child.

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it, and I'm glad it made you think of your mother. Thank you so much for stopping by; I'll return the favor asap.

      Delete
  27. Perfect Mothers' Day post. The quotes were just lovely. Really.

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  28. It's a very touching post. Mother's are really so wonderful. They always think of their children ahead of themselves. Going through the post made me reflect back on my growing up at home, the sacrifices made by Mom so that I never had a hard time. I can truly acknowledge, I am what I am today thank to her.

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    1. Hi, Ramakant. Thank you for paying a visit to my blog. I do appreciate it. And it's wonderful that you remember and appreciate the things your mother has done for you.

      Delete
  29. Beautiful post. Love the quotes, the sentiment, the Erma story, all of it. So well done.
    Tina @ Life is Good
    P.S Why not guest post on the A-Z Blog and plug your new book? Heading over to Goodreads to leave my mark.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thanks, Tina. I'm glad you liked it. And thanks for leaving your mark over on Goodreads, too. I do appreciate it.

      As for guest posting, I'd be honored. Just tell me what you have in mind, and when you'd like me to do it.

      Delete
  30. What a lovely post! I really enjoyed it!

    Also, congrats on the book!!! I'll bet it's amazing!

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    1. Thanks! That puts a smile on my face.

      I hope people think it's amazing after they read it! HA! (Me, I'm amazed I finally finished fiddling with it...)

      Delete
  31. Hi Susan .. 'hundreds' of commenters before me - but a great great post and I loved the story of creation .. heart warming and so true for all mothers, all women, all lovers, all everyone ..

    Cheers and enjoy tomorrow and this weekend .. Hilary

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    1. I dunno about the "hundreds" part, but thanks. I appreciate the sentiments, and I'm glad you enjoyed Erma Bombeck's essay. She was quite a writer.

      Cheers back atcha, and you enjoy the weekend, too.

      Delete
  32. That first picture brought back a lot of memories! Happy Mother's Day!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Susan, this was a great post. I shared it all over the place. I laughed about the watermelon and the nose. Before my first child was born a friend said that giving birth was like trying to s$#@ a grand piano. I can attest to that. Did it five times and have six kids. (smile)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. Yeah, we're real gluttons for punishment, aren't we? One look at that new baby, and it's all worth it.

      Happy Mothers' Day! (times 6! )

      Delete
  34. what an adorable post!
    i did enjoy it, so thank you so much for sahring.

    i really like the photo of the daisies, too.

    simply beautiful!

    happy mothers' day!
    :))

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    1. Thanks! I'm glad you liked it, and thanks for stopping by to say hello. I hope you had a happy mother's day, too. (Almost over now.)

      Delete
  35. This was a beautiful post to mothers. I wish mine were still around, but I will enjoy the day with two of my three kids. The son will be in town on Thursday. A little late for mother's day, but I'll still get to see him. Thanks for the chance to win your book.

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi. Thanks. I wish my mother (and mother-in-law) were still around, too. I didn't get to see any of our kids today, but at least we were able to chat on the telephone, and my hubby treated me like a queen.

      Thanks for stopping by. I'll be returning the favor asap.

      Delete
  36. The best and intense and beautiful Mother's day post of the year..and I loved the conversation of God and angels...Really marvelous. :)
    http://bluesomeheart.blogspot.in/

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thank you. Sweet of you to say so. And thank you so much for stopping by.

      Delete
  37. There's nobody like Mom. That was beautiful. I hope all of you mothers have a very happy day. ;)

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    1. Right back atcha. I hope you had a super day, too.

      Delete
  38. Oh, thanks, you made me cry and it is only 6:30 in the morning on Mother's Day! This post was beautiful and well thought out, Susan, and I enjoyed all of the quotes and reading the Erma Bombeck story again.

    Happy Mother's Day, my friend! I'm going to do a post soon promoting your book and some of my other blog friends too. I'll let you know when I get it done. I can't wait to read it.

    Kathy M.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My goodness, I feel honored that you were reading my blog at 6:30 this morning. I hope you had a wonderful day.

      Thanks so much for the upcoming shout out on your blog. That put a great big smile on my face.

      Delete
  39. Very beautiful story. My wife always said God made man first and then stepped back and said "I can do better."
    And I know my mom still thinks I'm her baby.

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    1. Thanks. Your wife's right. Man was the beta test. (And of COURSE you're still your mother's baby!)

      Delete
  40. Sus, I love the daisies! They are so cheerful and they lift the spirit. Happy Mother's Day. And, when you have time, I gave you an award. Though I know this won't be the first. :)

    http://subliminalcoffee.blogspot.com/2013/05/i-scream-social.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. I love daisies, too. They're cheerful and don't have an uppity attitude.

      I hope you had a wonderful Mothers' Day, too. How sweet of you to offer me an award... I'll go check it out!

      Delete
  41. Beautifully written. Loved reading this post.

    Happy Mother's Day.

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    1. Thanks! I hope you had a very Happy Mothers' Day, too.

      Delete
  42. What is amazing to me, is how a baby can change a women. Just hearing the work "mama" brings on that change and I think you said it by wearing the clothes with the spit-up.

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    Replies
    1. Sure enough. In one magical moment, our priorities get changed forever.

      Delete
  43. This was an utterly beautiful collection of thoughts and writings - had me weeping buckets for my much-missed mum but loved it all the same.
    Thanks :-)

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    1. Hi, Karla! It's good to hear from you again. I hope you're doing well.

      Sorry to make you cry, but sometimes tears feel good. :-)

      Delete
  44. Hahahah.... loved the Phyllis Diller thought for the day!!

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  45. Very well said! It doesn't matter a bit how old the kiddos get, in our hearts. Hear hear!

    Visiting today from a nice shout out Manzanita gave you. :)

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    1. Hi-ya. Thanks for stopping by, and for signing on as a follower. I was planning to visit you, too, thanks to Manzie, but you beat me to the punch! (So put the tea kettle on... here I come!)

      That's right... our babies may have gray hair, but they're still our babies!

      Welcome aboard!

      Delete
  46. I love this Susan! What an awesome tribute to moms. And those quotes were fab. I never truly appreciated what my mom went thru til I became one. Now she amazes me more than ever to know she put up with me. lol

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. And you're right; nothing in this world puts motherhood into perspective better than becoming a mother.

      Delete
  47. Hello! Very nice blog and interesting posts, great atmosphere.
      Have a nice day. :)
    Welcome to our blog about photography. +
    I hope you also enjoy it with us.

    Greetings!

    "Do what you love is not even that, but anyway"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your photos are great. Thanks for stopping by again.

      Delete
  48. Love the quotes. I'm with Phyllis Diller! And who can resist baby feet?

    Congrats on the book release. Sounds quite feel-good, something to read on a rainy day.

    .....dhole

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    1. I don't know about anyone else, but I can't resist baby feet! (Especially when they're attached to our grandchildren.)

      Thanks. Some feel-good... some not so feel-good... but hopefully, a cozy rainy day (or sunny day) read.

      Delete
  49. I liked the quotes too! And I like that bit about creating the Mother model. How true.

    Very well put together, Susan!

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  50. Very well written, Susan. Loved the conversation between God and the angel. Makes me happy that I am the mother of three. May God bless us all.

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    1. Thanks. Glad ya liked it, and I'm happy to be the mother of three, too. (What a coincidence!) Love ya, kiddo.

      Delete
  51. I was talking about my baby boy the other day and someone asked how old he is.
    32.
    How did he get to be 32 already??
    I don't feel old, yet he is 32.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know what you mean. Our kids refused to stay young, too. Matter of fact, I'm pretty sure our oldest is older than I am now.

      Delete