Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thanks Mom!

Crazy Sleepy Pregnant Brain

This crazy thing has been happening to me, that while I'm asleep, but I think I'm awake, I have these NUTSO blogs written in my brain.

So one of the ones for last night was about Reflections, Birthdays, and my Mom.

When I was young we didn't have much money. I sort of knew that at the time, but not really. I knew I couldn't have everything I wanted, I knew my mom stressed about about where we stayed or what we ate on vacations. But we went on vacations, so I didn't really know. I knew clothes were hand me downs or yard sale specials, but I was actually kind of proud of that, I didn't realize it was because she was struggling to makes ends meet.

One thing that she ALWAYS did was make a HUGE deal about my birthday.

So much that as I got older I was tired of hearing "On this day 9 years ago...15 years ago...19 years ago..." you changed my life. Yep, I want to slap that little ungrateful brat of myself who was annoyed when her loving mother doted about the life changer that she was. Alas, it would be a wasted effort, because it took growing up to learn to respect all that my mom was and all she provided for me and my brother.

On the year that happened to be "27 years ago..." I got to spend that birthday with my mom my new 3 week old baby girl, and I finally understood, at 28 years after I'd celebrated Lily's first bday, I TOTALLY understood. I finally got why today is just about my mom as it is about me.

Today is the anniversary of my mom becoming a mother. The role that would ultimately define her life, provide her most of her important successes and relationships, and give her the opportunity to change her little piece of the world through me, through us.

She always seemed to find a way to give me something that I really wanted on my bday. And I always always had a LOT to open. Sometimes it was packs of gum and packets of hot chocolate along with the toys and games, but there were always many gifts to unwrap. I so loved that. She also let me start planning my party, months in advance, she suffered through TOO many tweenie slumber parties with WAY too many girls sleeping over. She made a homemade cake, bought ice cream, she made tacos or spaghetti, and that was that. She didn't have to spend a lot of money to make me feel very, very, very happy and special on my bday. And she never really complained about being kept up all night from giggling girls (or fighting ones) and pulling bras our of the freezer the next morning!

In some ways, after I left home, birthdays were never as special with out my mom there to dote on me and tell me that this was the biggest day of the world. Even if I got to do something really cool, I was always disappointed to unwrap one or few gifts. My mom's box always arrived a few days late complete with the wrapped gum and International Delight Coffee tin, but it wasn't the same as having it on my bday morning. My roommates and boyfriends always thought it SO strange that I got smoked oysters and shelled nuts to "make the box shake", that it was all wrapped in a shoe box or cereal box or whatever else she had lying around. A box is a box. This is my mom's fabulous eclectic way, and I secretly always loved that they thought it was so weird.

Today - This morning, my 33rd bday, was kind of funny because I had a gift from Lawrence, Sabine, Lily, Addie, & Bryson. Then I had a PLETHORA of little crafts gifts made this week by Lily & Addie. Lily had wrapped each one. So I had what felt like a million presents to unwrap this morning. I loved it! It was so great. My daughter has my mom ideals about the more you unwrap the better, regardless of what is inside! :) And I even got the card from my dear mom on time! That's a big feat for her, and I know that, and it meant a lot to me. She sent gift cards, that I asked for, but she has also been replaced by mega gift giver, Lily! So, as I love, I had a lot to open.

Before I was a mom, I never understood why my bday was so important to my mom. Why she wanted to recount the details and talk about the exact time I came into the world. What the doctor said to her, how she felt. I didn't get it.

But now, I see. I owe so much of the good person I am to her, to her sacrafices and her kind heart. Her selflessness and her generosity. Because of her decsions and hard work. I'm happy to share my birthday with my mom who 33 years ago brought me into the world at 7:31am and the doctor told her I was the most beautiful baby he had ever seen...and she agreed...and she's always always made sure I knew that...

Thanks, Mom. Happy my Birthday to you!


  1. What an awesome post to your mom! I love it!

    Isn't it true....we never appreciated our Mom's when we were younger the way we do now.

    Happy Birthday! I hope you have a great day!!

  2. Happy Birthday Jenny. That is a beautiful and loving appreciation of your Mom. Wonderful to read. Love you!

  3. I love that ! It is so neat to here (and makes me want to thank my mom) the specials of your mom and now you have for your daughters and son to be.. :))

    PS - we dont consider it a christmas stocking with out the smoked oysters too!!LOL

  4. Ah, you know I so feel the same way. I love this post. Happy Birthday sweetie.

  5. It's crazy to think this is the 3rd one I haven't been around for. I know technically I was there last year, but it's really not the same. You'll never know how often I think about you and your family and how much I miss you all. I hope you had a wonderful birthday - love you.

  6. This was such a great tribute to your mom and I had to laugh because when we lived together I always loved seeing what your mom would send for your birthday. You were able to put into words what I feel now that I am a mom and how far we've come from our egocentric days. Glad to hear you had a wonderful birthday with your family. love Robin