An Ode to Ma

Sep 15

Ma

How many people can you really count on in life? Who’s hand will pull you in from outside, no matter the crime or hardship? For as long as I can remember, my dear mother has been on the top of that list.

Growing up, I assumed that it was a mom’s duty to love her children unconditionally. I took for granted that my mom catered to my every need, considered my wants and set aside her own desires just so that I’d be happy. Since moving away, my theory has been shattered time and again. Over the years, I’ve made friends who’ve wanted nothing to do with their moms for very valid reasons. I’ve met moms who’ve rightfully run from abusive children. Then, there’s this monster-mother who seemingly deserved every word in this obituary to end all obits!

So I’m lucky. And thankful. Even though I have rejected my childhood religion, political beliefs and adopted a life that contrasts my parents’ very small and private one, my mom and I have shared secrets that have surprised us both. We’ve taught each other lessons of forgiveness, acceptance, compromise and pushed boundaries of what constitutes love.  We’ve become dear friends and probably closer because of our differences. That unconditional love and support lasts to this day: if my life falls apart tomorrow, I know who’s door I’m knocking on!

Happy 80th birthday, mom!

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