#30DaysofThanks, bad words, cancer, growing up, moms, motherhood, stay at home mom, thankful

My Mom

My mom taught me the value of a handwritten thank you note. She knows how to make a pie — including the crust — and used to sew dresses for me and my sister. She is possibly the nicest person you’ll ever meet. Today I am thankful for my mom.

We’ve had very different lives, my mother and I. Growing up, she lived on the family farm in small town Minnesota, one of five children. She knows how to bake and sew and probably still knows a few words of German thanks to having her German-speaking grandparents around when she was growing up.

I’ve lived in ten states and have one sibling. I think it would be so cool to know how to bake and sew, but I can’t really do any of that. I know some Spanish because I married someone whose first language is Spanish. I don’t live near any of my family and rarely see them.

Though our lives have been different, her influence on me shows. She was a stay at home mom in my early years. I made that choice for my family as well, in part because I have fond memories of her being home with us. Mom’s had some hard times in her life but always points out that “others have it worse” — something I also keep in mind thanks to her perspective.

My mom had to deal with a lot of crap when I had cancer. She had to deal with a lot more crap when her husband, my step-dad, had cancer. She is a natural born caregiver, which is a tough role to have to play in life, but she’s done so with grace and strength.

Recently she retired from the Post Office — no doubt she had to deal with a lot of crap there, too. (And “crap” is like a bad word to my sweet, Lutheran, farm-girl mom so I didn’t get my need for “bad words” from her. Sorry, Mom.) I hope she has much less crap to deal with now and in the future.

Today I am thankful for my mom, especially because today is her birthday. Happy Birthday, Mom!

My mom with me and my sister. 1981?
Mom with my girls. 2013.
Mom with my girls. 2013.