The lovely ladies from our women’s ministry team held a luncheon last Saturday in honor of Mother’s Day. Everyone was encouraged to bring salads. Having any kind of potluck at church is like Jesus and the loaves and fishes: enough to feed thousands.
My daughter, Shannon, is part of the ministry team, and was drafted to ask me to share a few memories of my mother during the program. “No longer than two minutes.” No problem. I could talk about my mother for hours. When I arrived, she told me Andrea would be sharing memories of her and she (Shannon) would be sharing memories of me.
I could remember every failing moment as a parent. Was she going to share the time I wanted to strangle her? Literally. Or the times we stood at opposite ends of the hall yelling at one another? Or the time Rick came home exhausted from a long business trip overseas only to his wife and daughter in a shouting match, and he said, “Am I going to have to crack your heads together?” Oh, dear.
Andrea gave a perfect speech. “The think I like best about my mom is that she’s always there for me. When I’m sick, (she was recently), she takes care of me.. If I ask if she’ll play a board game, she almost always says yes…” She shared all kinds of wonderful things and ended with “Roses are red, violets are blue, I like Mommy and Daddy, too.”
Shannon’s turn came and I held my breath. (Hadn’t I teased my mother unmercifully for years over the one time she spanked me – with her shoe? She had good reason. She had to run down a mile of beach to catch up with me and my cousin before we entered a military firing range.)
“My favorite time with my mom was always snuggle time…” Whew. “When Rick went into the Air Force…mom drove me from California to Texas…we saw Yosemite, Bryce, Zion, Grand Canyon… it was the first of our trips together.” We’ll have many more. “When I tell her I don’t want advice, she doesn’t give it. When I tell her I need advice, she gives it… She reminds me there are two sides to every story.” I can’t take any credit. I learned all that from my mom. Shannon had only nice things to say, and I wanted to cry happy tears.
I will cherish her card forever: “Happy Mother’s Day… you’ve given me so much I want to think of some way to repay you for all your hard work. When you get senile I promise to make sure your socks always match.” That is a far cry from her threat to leave me in a baby pool (sans diapers) and hose me off from time to time.
We both share a twisted sense of humor.