I'm trying to keep my business, my triplets, and my waistline under control. I excel at one of those, fail at another one of those, and one is a work in progress. Which is which is day dependant.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Happy 60th Birthday Ima!

Today is my Mom's 60th birthday - or at least, it is in the US. Here Down Under she is 60 years +1 day old. Given this momentous occassion, I thought I should write a blog entry about her. After all, she has been bugging (okay, demanding) that I do this for some time. In lots of ways, my Mom and I are very, very different people. She's into clothes/hair/make up...and I'm not. She'll say anything to keep someone happy....and I nearly never do. She thinks 'recycling' is wearing the same outfit twice, and I'm out there separating the plastic from the paper. She would have a hard time baking a cake out of a mix...and well, you know. Over the years these differences have caused (mostly for me) a fair amount of angst. I wanted her to be the Mom who helped out at Brownies, who baked something for the bake sale, who drove me to after school activities or who was home when I got home from school. She wasn't like that. She was a working Mom - who didn't 'do' extracurricular activities, definetly didn't bake, and because of her work hours couldn't be home at 3pm every day. She was allergic to anything with hair, so pets were out. She hated parent/teacher conferences - because anyway I was a genius and no teacher was going to tell her differently, so why should she waste her time going? In short she was no June Cleaver, unless June hung out in the Valley driving a big ol' Cadillac.

All of this is not to say that my Mom was a bad Mom. NOT AT ALL. She was a great Mom, in the ways she could be. She loves me unconditionally - if I'm fat (you need to do something about the overweight), if I'm thin (you're too skinny already!), if I am grumpy (what's with you?), if I don't call or email (you don't love me), if I tell her she is an old lady (that's alte-kaker to you). Through my childhood she did lots of totally great things for me and my siblings (including tolerating my Dad, but that's another story). She also did things for herself. It used to drive me crazy - all her grooming, caring about clothes and hair, etc. It's only as an adult that I realise what all those hours spent sitting next to her in a hairspray and acetone fog were really about: the importance of looking after yourself, and feeling good about yourself. I'll never be the clothes horse she wants me to be. I'll never love getting dressed up, I'll always hate stockings, and I'll fight her every inch of the way into a mall. I will, however, always know the importace of taking time out for myself, to make myself feel good (and doing that with great hair.) My Mom is a smart, funny lady who believes that her children can do anything if they put their mind too it. She makes me laugh, makes me shake my head with wonder, and often she makes me wish she lived closer.

Does she like to guilt trip me, as all Jewish mothers do? Of course. Does she totally drive me insane, as all Jewish mothers do? Of course. Will our differences continue to make going to the mall difficult? Of course. Will she always offer me the chocolate in her purse if I'm miserable, even if two seconds earlier she was telling me I need to lose weight? Of course.

Will she always, always, always be there if I need her? OF COURSE.
And THAT is what being a mother is all about.

Thanks, Ima, for teaching me the biggest lesson of all. Hope your birthday celebrations were great - as usual I was there in spirit.

2 comments:

yehudit said...

SINCE I AM THE SUBJECT OF YOUR BKLOG. I HAVE A FEW COMMENTS: FIRST THANK YOU FOR THE COMPLIMENTS. SECOND AN E MAIL FROM YOU ONCE IN A BKLE MOON WOULD NOT KILL YOU. THIRD CRAIG SAID YOU FORGOT THE SHOES.
LYTMYAT

Anonymous said...

Your mum is an alte kacka?!?!

Mine too...

J