Friday, May 11, 2012

mighty. small.

my mom.

i call her mama kay. mamers. mama jama. kay-fa-lay-fa. mom.

no matter what i call her, though, she always answers.

i went to a mother's day brunch at my oldest's preschool, this week, and all of the mommies went around and talked about their own mothers. we said our mom's names and then gave a word (or 3) to describe what we loved about our moms.

it's impossible to describe your mom in one word. moms are just so much.

but my mom...

when she tells me of my birth, she says, "and when you were born, i cried. ...i was so happy you were a little girl."

mom is little.

she's 5 feet tall. that's it. no inches taller.

when we hug, her head is on my chest. i've been known to give her piggy back rides, by force of course, just to hear her scream with fear and giddiness. it is a hilarious sight. go ahead, picture it.

mom has blue eyes, perfectly straight teeth (i inherited the no need for braces teeth from her), a fabulous smile with dimpled cheeks, brown hair (that has never ever been dyed. ehem.), a sneeze that is so loud it will wake you out of a dead sleep with your dukes raised ready to fight, and a laugh that once it gets going, you can't help but join in.

mom is just easy on the eyes.

but just like i tell my loralai when people compliment her beauty, i always remind her that her most beautiful trait is her heart.

my mom's heart must glow. i mean it.

mom is pure gold.

she's a sensitive spirit who delights in making others happy. she's a giver. God gifted her in that.

as i heard one of the mothers at the brunch talk about her mom, she spoke of her in the past tense. her mom died last year. she was the only one out of us all who has lost her mom.

i watched my mom, when i was a little girl, lose her mom to cancer. and then at 25, i watched my mom as she grieved her dad. it doesn't matter how old we are, losing a parent is horrible.

and i know. because i lost my dad. and sometimes i feel like i lost him twice.

dad was caught up in such oppression with hurts from his past and the addiction to alcohol, that there was a long season that we had to just let him go. and in that season, i remember feeling like i'd lost him all together. and then our relationship was restored right before and after i married my husband...and six months later, dad died.

and so as i heard sophia's mom describe her mother, i took a deep breath. and not because i fear losing my mom, but because i know how desperately deep i love her.

i've been called fighsty, determined, courageous, bold, big-personalitied...

and while some of the time those words weren't meant as compliments, i still smile at them all. because all of those are parts of my personality that my mom helped to fan in me.

mom recalls a time, when i was a preschooler, where i would let people walk all over me and take my toys and i wouldn't stick up for myself. i sort of snicker at that, because i've never known that girl.

my dearest childhood friend would tell you that i've had to tame the boldness, at times, but that those qualities about me are the very things that have given me charge and joy in my life.

but they come from a mom who was loving enough to call out what she knew was in me, even when it wasn't showing. she would encourage me in my drawing or painting, or singing, or softball, or friendships...

even as a grown woman, the best place in the world, to me, is sitting with my mom and talking. she knows me. she knows my heart's desires and she continues to press me so that i won't give up on them.

i used to lay on the couch with my head on my mom's lap, while we would watch tv, and she would stroke my hair.

there's something really primal in that. it's like the extension of when a mother rubs her pregnant belly. mothers always want to touch their children - comfort them - reassure them.

one of my mom's sayings that she's said over the years is "it's going to be alright... because it has to be."

she's never believed that things wouldn't be good.

and things plain sucked for a while in her world.

i don't care who you are, unless you lived on Irish Lane with us, you will never know the fullness of what went down.

so take my word or don't, but it stunk.
do you know what, though? never. not once did that sweet little woman say an unkind word to me or my brother about my dad or anyone in relationship with him. never.

i look back at that and just marvel.

she showed the deepest amount of honor for her husband, despite the circumstances. and because of that, my brother and i felt free to pursue relationship with our dad instead of feeling like we had to take sides in a battle.

my mom. Lord that woman is strong.

she may be small, but she is a mighty warrior of the Lord.

when you look at her, you'll think, "she's fun. she's cute."

but let me tell you who she is:

she is the daughter of Carl and Dorcas
she is a mother
she is a servant of the Most High God
she is a talented seamstress
she is a military brat
she is a devoted grandmother
she is a world traveler
she is a a lover of music
she is a closet singer
she is an audiologist
she's a darn good cook
she's a dog lover and makes us watch that crazy dog show on tv, directly following the Macy's day parade
she is a car-ride away in the middle of the night if life gets hairy and you need her there
she is a friend of all seasons
she is a chatty little thing
she is a hoot, i tell you
she's an email forwarder who'll fwd: emails 3 times just because she's laughing and thinks you should too
she's a gardener
she has a green thumb and won't admit it and is obsessed with making her yard "just so" and has therefore dug up plants and trees and re-planted them way too many times to count
she is a sister to a sister whom she hasn't seen in 10+ years but is awaiting her prodigal with open arms
she is a shag dancing fool
she is a mom who never required anything of me other than to tell her the truth at all times
she is a mother-n-law who loves her daughter-n-law as if she were her own
she is a crafty little woman who crochets and knits and needle points
she is an idea-woman
she is always trying a new project
she is never stale, always new, she is refreshing and honest, she is joy and peace, she is sunny days and lemonade, she is a delicious new recipe and a phone call to share and talk all about it, she is in her swimsuit and running through the sprinklers with her grand babes, she is hot tea and not coffee, she is a size 5 shoe (sometimes 6), she is a slow boat ride - not fast (or she'll vomit on you later), she's a dreamer of living on the water, she's snuggly flannel jammies in the winter, and hot chocolate for any special occasion, she's an open heaven and humble, an open book and real...

she's worthy of love.

she stands by me always.

oh mama, if you only knew how loyal you are.

she taught me that i deserve God's best and that it is never ok to bow to anything less.

she will let me experiment makeup and new hair-dos on her just so that we can be together.

she is a living well of victorious living. a testimony of God's grace, perseverance and hope.

she's small, but she's mighty.

oh yes. kay ellen packs a punch.

i am honored that God placed me in her womb.

she is so worthy of my love, because she first loved me.

i love you so, my sweet mamers.

1 comment:

Amanda Dengler said...

Aaaaa. So awesome!! Happy mother's day to both of you.