We celebrated my Mom’s 80th Birthday five days ago with a family party. Of course I had to have a theme. (Birthday parties ALWAYS require a theme!) I didn’t want to do just an “80” theme – I want something to convey just how special and marvelous my Mom really is and that’s when I decided on a Unicorn theme. My Mom is unique and a rare human being, much like a unicorn.
My Mom is small in stature, she’s not even 5 foot but she has one of the biggest hearts of anyone I have ever met. She performs good deeds on a daily basis. She is a nurturer and has spent her life taking care of others without complaint. She is a phenomenal cook and baker – her homemade noodles, buns, cinnamon rolls and sugar cookies are wait-for-it – legendary.
Mom is, for the most part, a solitary, quiet soul. But she will let you know if you’ve stepped out of line. My childhood memories include seeing her sitting in her chair, reading her Bible and also being in the Church pew, clapping her hands as the old familiar Gospel tunes were being sung. Faith and love of God have always been a constant in her life. She’s never let go of that faith, even in the most trying of times. Mom endures her constant pain and illness and hardships of life without complaint – there are not too many people who do that.
Mom put my brothers and I first in her life – she played with us and went without to give to us what she never had as a child. I remember the sled riding parties in the wintertime. My dad would build a fire and everyone would congregate on the snowy hill with sleds and saucers. One year the hill was slick and icy and my Mom flew off her saucer and got banged up pretty badly but she got back up again and continued to ride down the hill. During one of my teenage summers, my Mom got up and took my Dad to work at 6:30 am (we were a 1 car family) and then later in the morning, she drove me over 20 miles to the library so I would have some summer reading material. And then she picked up my Dad from work in the afternoon.
I thought (still do) that my Mom was the best Mom Ever and then she go promoted to Grandma and immediately became the Best Gram Ever. She watched my kids without complaint so I could travel with Steve to truck shows and events. She now has 6 great-grandchildren and let me tell you, she is the Best Great-Gram Ever, too! She gets down on the floor and plays with the kids and surprises them with special treats and gives the best hugs and kisses.
What do I love about my Mom? Her sense of humor, her honor, her goodness, her love for all of us. When I was younger, a family lost their home in a fire just before Christmas and Mom rallied our Church and held a special offering during our Christmas pageant and presented it to the family. When I was a teenager, she organized a walk-a-thon to raise money to buy presents for patients in the local nursing home. She quietly donates money to people and events. Her special ministry to sending cards to people, not just at birthdays or holidays, but thinking of you cards to bolster the spirits of someone who may be feeling down.
If you asked my Mom, she would tell you that she thinks that she has not lived a very extraordinary life – but she is oh-so-very-wrong! She has touched the lives of so many people, more than she will ever know. She inspires, she motivates, and she has made us better human beings because of the example that she has set. Unicorns may be mythical but my Mom is the genuine, real deal. You are my world, Mom and loved to infinity and beyond.