“Motherhood is the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary – it’s an act of infinite optimism.”

Special days have special posts. 

Today is Mother’s Day. It is the day I honor my mother and my memories of her. Every year I post basically this same entry with only a few little changes. 

I am amazed at how long ago I lost my mother. Sometimes it seems like a day while other times it feels like forever. I keep her close always, in my heart. 

My mother was amazing. She was generous, fun to be with and was the perfect martyr when she needed to be, a skill I think most mothers have. It was her tone of voice so filled with pain that caused our guilt to well to the surface. “I’ll do it myself,” she’d say. We’d scurry to do whatever she wanted. She was tricky, that woman.

My sisters and I laugh often about the curses she inflicted on us: the love of everything Christmas and never thinking you have enough presents for everyone, giving Easter baskets overflowing with candy and fun toys and surprising people with a gift just because.

My mother had a generosity of spirit. She was funny and smart and the belle of every ball. She always had music going in the kitchen as she worked so she could sing along. She played Frank and Tony and Johnny and from her I learned the old songs. My mother drew all the relatives to her, and her house was filled on holidays and weekends. My cousins visited often. She was their favorite aunty. My mother loved to play Big Boggle, and we’d sit for hours at the kitchen table and play so many games we’d lose track of the time. Christmas was always amazing, and she passed this love to all of us. We traveled together, she and I, and my mother was game for anything. I remember Italy and my mother and me after dinner at the hotel bar where she’d enjoy her cognac. She never had it any other time, but we’re on vacation she said and anything goes. I talked to her just about every day, as did my sisters. I loved it when she came to visit. We’d shop, have dinner out then play games at night. I always waited on her when she was here. I figured it was the least I could do.

My mother loved extreme weather shows, TV judges and crime. She never missed Judge Judy. She also liked quiz shows and she and I used to play Jeopardy together on the phone at night. She always had a crossword puzzle book with a pen inside on the table beside her chair, and I used to try to fill in some of the blanks. On the dining room table was often a jig saw puzzle, and we all stopped to add pieces on the way to the kitchen. My mother loved a good time.

She did get feisty, and I remember flying slippers aimed at my head when I was a kid and one time a dictionary, a big dictionary, was thrown which luckily missed me though the binding broke when it hit the wall. I pointed that out to her and that made her madder. She expertly used mother’s guilt on us, her poor victims. We sometimes drove her crazy, and she let us know, none too quietly. We never argued over politics. She kept her opinions close. We sometimes argued over other things, but the arguments never lasted long.

Even after all this time, I still think to reach for the phone to call my mother when I see something interesting or have a question I know only she can answer, but then in a split second I remember. When I woke up this morning, my first thought was of her, and how much she is missed. No one ever told me how hard it would be. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!!

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2 Comments on ““Motherhood is the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary – it’s an act of infinite optimism.””

  1. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,

    I know how you’re feeling on mother’s day. My mother has been gone 60 years this past January. It’s been so long that I can’t remember much about her and can’t remember her voice at all. I do recall her throwing shoes at my sister and I when her frustration level got too high. I have snipits of visual memories like snapshots. Other memories of her have long ago since faded. Some days I have difficulty remembering what I did last week or even yesterday. 🙂

    My spouse was thrilled with my daughter’s and my son’s Mother’s Day gifts. My son has decided to go out to the used bookstore these days wearing his mask, not crowded during weekdays, and bought my wife a gift. Surprises never cease to amaze me.

    Today is another beautiful sunny day with a high temperature of 81° right now. There was chance of thunderstorms this afternoon, but I think the cold front has already passed us by. Sitting out here on my patio the humidity has decreased and the wind has swung around to the northwest. It’s a delightful afternoon to sit outside. Soon enough it will be too hot to enjoy the patio.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      I remember so much about my mother. We traveled together, and I used to visit for the weekend. I loved her visits down here. We had fun!

      I’m glad your kids made their mother happy. Your son especially made greats points with his mother.

      Wow, 81˚ is really hot, early August hot. I’d be inside in the cool house. It stayed nice today. It wasn’t warm but, with the sun, it was okay. I’m looking forward to deck afternoons.

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