Happy Monday! Last week, I promised myself (and all of you reading) that I would write a nonfiction narrative about one of this blog’s subscribers. Being that there is 1 subscriber out of whom I was created/formed, it seems fitting to start with her. Unfortunately, it’s REALLY difficult for me to choose just one story to tell, so I’m going to do my best to transition seamlessly through several. My mom & I have shared a MILLIONBAJILLION moments, so the ones I’m including here will hopefully combine to provide an accurate image of our relationship.
The first memory I’m thinking of with my mom was just a quicky, when she almost stepped on a rattlesnake.
“Sharon! Sharon!” my dad yelled, but she enjoys nature much too much to be bothered with the ramblings of her overcautious husband. 🙂
Then there was the time she & I climbed into a fabulous porch swing together to talk about mother/daughter things in the midst of God’s beautiful green North Carolina mountains.
The scene was SPECTACULAR. The porch we were on is perhaps the best in all the world. It wraps around two whole sides of my grandmother’s (Nanny’s) house, & it looks out over a valley that leads down to George’s Fork road in Burnsville, NC. It’s like nothing Tucsonans EVER experience. God knows that I love His desert (& would like nothing better than to live here forever), but there is something enchanting about sitting on a porch swing in the South. It makes you wish you had an ice-cold glass of lemonade.
So Mom & I were out there swinging, enjoying the green & each other, when…
The DAMN swing ripped right out of the ceiling, reminding me that I probably shouldn’t eat anymore of Nanny’s homemade, hand-picked Strawberry jelly.
Mom & I burst into a fit of giggles, & Pa (Mom’s dad) came outside to see what all of the racket was. 🙂 He was a very serious, honorable kind of man, & a Mr. Fix-it, so he had the swing back in working order in no time, but my wounded pride was unrepairable after having so unceremoniously proven the need for a diet.
The last Mommy story I’m going to share happened pretty soon after I started playing softball, so I was probably ten or eleven years old. My mom had decided to join a slow-pitch co-ed softball team from the hospital she worked at, and I was BEYOND excited to see her being all athletic & whatnot.
She looked so professional standing there in the on-deck circle, taking some warm-up hacks, and my daughterly pride went OUT-OF-CONTROL, THROUGH-THE-ROOF when she walked up to the plate & dug into the batter’s box.
Yup. That’s my mom.
She watched the first pitch go by and the umpire called it a ball.
Look at my mom being all disciplined at the plate. She has a good-eye!
1-0 was the count when the second pitched floated in there, & my hero-mom took a fierce hack, knocking a frozen rope that short-hopped the other team’s third baseman.
Thrilled to have made solid contact, my mom took off running just as fast as her feet would carry her. Too bad she refused to buy that pair of cleats that were too expensive for a recreational league.
THUMP! She fell.
Up on her feet again… had to run… had to make it to 1st base.
BWANK! On the ground again.
Up. Step. Step. Step.
The ump didn’t even have the heart to say ‘out’ when the 3rd baseman’s throw reached 1st.
“Mommy!” my heart cried out, although my mouth was at a loss for words.
My little ten-year-old self had never seen anything like this. My parents were infallible. Nothing bad could ever touch them – or so I thought prior to that moment. My eyes filled up with the kind of tears that only a kid can muster – half disappointment in the injustice of life, & half empathetic pain for Mommy’s skinned knees. It was one of those delicious epiphanies that hurt too much at the time to be enjoyed, but it was that night that I realized my mom is (and always was) a person.
When I was trying to pick out which stories to tell about my mommy, I thought about the time we hiked the Grand Canyon together, & I kept her awake all night because there was the COOLEST little critter who kept running out of his house to play with me, though in retrospect, he was probably just annoyed that such scary giants had made camp right next to his hole. I thought about all of the places we’ve traveled in the U.S. for softball tournaments & to look at colleges. I thought about the time when I left her on the subway in Rome & when a homeless man exposed his parts to us (but Mom didn’t notice so she followed him around for a bit). I thought about the gondolier who put his tongue in my mouth without invitation even though my mom was right next to us! I thought of all the times we played Scrabble when I was young… & she beat me every time.
Nowadays, she & I generally split scrabble wins right down the middle. We haven’t been to a softball tournament in about 6 years, & we rarely travel anywhere together. But no matter how many changes our relationship endures, or how many times one of us falls & gets up again & falls & gets up again & falls, she will always be my hero-mom, who is disciplined, has a good-eye but selective hearing, and probably should have spent the extra $30 and gotten herself a pair of shoes. 🙂