Today is my mom's birthday. She would have been 65. I don't know how old she was in that picture, I am guessing 3 or 4. I look at it and can see a bit of Maggie, a bit of Cassie and a bit of Nate, too. I am glad for that.
My mom was great. As a teenager, I probably would have rolled my eyes and been all, whatever, but she really was. I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to be friends with her as well as her daughter. Now that I am a mom, I look back at different things and think, Wow, she was just so good at being a mom.
She loved her family. She took such pride in us, if we had an achievement she would just beam. She was always our biggest cheerleaders, really rooting for us to succeed, and so proud when we did. She was also the first with a hug or comforting word if things didn't work out. And would get angry on our behalf at whatever made us mad/sad.
She loved books and reading, she worked in an elementary school library for at least 10 years. She was technically an aide, as she didn't have the college degree, but she ran that library better than anyone...knew where everything was, knew which books the kids would like, and loved doing story times.
She loved movies that were so bad they were funny. She loved Elvis. She had quite a collection of Elvis records, and even got to see him at one of his last shows. She bought my Aunt tickets, under the condition that she take my mom and that my Aunt drove into Providence. (My mom wasn't a fan of driving, especially on the highway. She could find back roads to anywhere.)
So the day of the Elvis concert, my mom was out running errands before the show. Well, Uncle Ralph was a police officer, and knew that my mom and Aunt Barbara had the concert that evening. So he sees her out driving, and to be funny, pulls her over. (I can only imagine how horrified my mom was to be stopped by a cop!) He gets out of the car with his sunglasses and hat on. Well, when she realized that it was my uncle, she got so mad she just drove away! (I wonder what people who saw thought!) "Oh that Ralph" she would say-all mad, when the story was retold.
She loved to laugh, and I was usually good at making her laugh. She would only ride on ferris wheels with me, apparently my shaking the cart to tease her helped ease her fears.