Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mama / Janet

Happy Mother's Day.  I pray that each of you are having a wonderful day with your families.  I am.  Though I have loved every moment of the day so far, a little piece of me lies in Braselton Georgia with my mama.  That is one of the handful of things that really stinks when you live out of state, sometimes you miss the days that seem to be more and more important the older you get. 

For those of you who do not know my mom, she is better known as Janet.  If you have met her, you will remember.  Her presence is in one word, unforgettable.  It makes me smile to think of how my opinion of Janet has changed over my 37 years.  Oh how we learn as we go.  You see as a child my mom was my everything.  She was my mom, my encourager, my disciplinary, my friend, my cook, my maid, my coach.  She was the one that wiped the tears, kissed the boo boos, told me stories, sang me songs.  She was a great mom and I remember clearly that I thought so then.  I realize now just how great she was. 

As we grew up, my mom and I had our moments. We are a lot a like and that at times made my teenage years tough.  I do remember that she was one of the "cool" moms when we were in school.  I think if she could take that back now, she would. But if I have learned anything in the last 4 years, it is that none of us know exactly what we are doing and none of us are perfect. Right ladies? And though I think she would do some thing differently, she was always there, always protecting us even from ourselves and we could tell her anything. 

My twenties were not my best string of years, I made a lot of mistakes.  All of which my mom conveniently ignored ;).  Well I say ignored but actually she was paying very close attention.  She always knew where I was supposed to be and where I wasn't.  And if I was having a "wasn't" kind of month she was checking on me much more than I liked.  At the time it drove me nuts, now I appreciate it more than I could put into words. 

Then I met Doc, we had babies and who my mom is to me changed completely.  Yes she had always been on my side, there to help, easy to access.  But the reality of what she did for me became crystal clear.  You see my mom had two very healthy children and then she had me. When I was young I had some problems that caused me to not be able to do all of the physical things the other kids my age could do.  It's a long story so for your sake I'll leave it at that.  I was told I wouldn't play sports or jump rope. I wouldn't run and jump.  PE would be less than exciting.  My mom heard all the doctors had to say, but she did not listen.  Nope, not Janet.  Janet was making no excuses for her middle child that was somewhere between a tornado and a fire cracker personality wise.  So, while she raised my sister and nursed my brother she spent all of her extra time on me.  I can still hear her "flex and point and bend and straighten".  I cannot begin to tell you the time and energy that she put into me, but let's just say that I danced for 9 years and played softball in high school. 

After I had Kathryne, I realized the extent of what she did for me.  I realized how much energy she must have put into me day in and day out so that I could be what we defined as "normal".  I was struggling to feed Kathryne lunch and nurse Presley without losing my mind and 28 years prior my mom was doing three times what I was capable of.  Just as she always has, just as she still does. 

Now that I am a mom appreciation does not even touch on what I have for my mother.  Admiration and awe are two of many words that I think of when I think of Janet.  She is a mother, a wife, a grandmother, a friend.  She is loyal and never ending.  She does not stop, she does not rest, she does not say no.  Her commitment to her children is one that cannot be matched.  We can and have called her from TN, 4.5 hours away at 1 AM and she has packed and driven in the dark, in the rain.  She does not ask, she just hears and moves.  She is our go to person, our help, the person that does not, will not say no.  The one that wants to rather than has to.  She has rescued us countless times over the two hardest, most exhausting years of our lives and saying thank you sounds ridiculous. 

I pray that she knows what she means to my family.  I pray that she is made to realize who she is to my brother and sister and I.  I pray that one day my girls will sit and think about who I am to them and that their heart will overflow with so much appreciation that they cannot write it down without tears flowing.  She is not perfect or without fault, she has never pretended to be.  She, just like all of us makes mistakes and has to ask for a mulligan now and then.  But she gives us 100% all of the time, even when we have not earned it and do not deserve it.  I am blessed beyond measure by our Janet.  If I have said it once I have said it 100 times since my kids were born.  Everyone has a mom, but we have a Janet.  And my friends, there is only Janet. 

Happy Mother's Day mama.  I love you.  Melanie Shea

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