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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

one word

yesterday, niecey and i took a mini road trip for me to do a little work and for her to check out another college option.

being in a car for a prolonged time with someone can either be really fun or horrendously awkward. i'm pleased it was more the former, as niecey has been living with us for just over two weeks now, and with new relationships, it could have gone either way.

so in between topics like is living here like you expected or completely different or who do you miss most from home, i tossed in a little game called "one word."

one word to describe your mom. (one positive and one perhaps not) after thinking (wow, that's so hard! she lamented) for a minute, she said, involved. such a quiet, yet busy action word. (and she blogged about it eloquently here)

i'd be interested to hear what bamagirl would say.

the game sparked a trip through the family tree and memories. it was kind of fun. and i loved getting a glimpse into her heart that typical conversations usually net. her heart is full and loving and appreciative.

it got me thinking about my mom, and initially, i said hilarious. humor and laughter so defined her. but now that i've had a little while to chew on this, i think i would pick influential.

she had a real joie de vivre. a sparkle in her eye. a helpful nature. accomplished in the kitchen. a true wife of the 50s/60s/70s. dutiful, devoted and domestic.

i don't want this to turn into a novel, but i had lots of health problems as a child. well, orthapaedically challenged is probably a better description. and my mom was beside me every step of the way. when i began 6th grade at a new school, she was there to encourage me. and mid-way through that year when i had to wear a giant Milwaukee brace, a frankenstonian monstrosity made only more atrocious with the addition of the braces on my teeth and my wire-rimmed glasses (my 6th grade picture is merely a giant reflective glare), my mom was right there, my devoted cheerleader.

later, the whole spine thing spun out of control and i ended up in a 1/2 spica cast for the summer between my 7th and 8th grade. basically, it's a body cast that goes from the chest down to one knee, the other leg free. but impossible to bend at the waist. we had a hospital bed in the living room, since i couldn't go up the stairs. everyone had to clear out when i needed to use the restroom. yep. my mom was on chief bedpan city for the entire summer. (i could have used a go girl, for sure!)two years later she was at it again when she was my physical therapist, helping me regain the function of my arm and leg after a brief paralysis during my second spinal surgery for Harrington Rods. never did she let me lapse into poor-me-pitty parties or allow me to make excuses for why i couldn't go back to school. yes. the meanest thing she ever did was make me go back to school in a full torso body cast. right to my chin to my pubic bone. completely incarcerated and let's just say, social suicide. constantly tripping (due to my droopy left foot from paralysis) with a body cast. yes, guys were standing in line to take me out on a friday night. . . not.

but i digress.

making me go back to school was the best thing for me and made me who i am today.

my mom was a huge influence on me. her journey through four back surgeries helped me deal with my three. she was an olympic-caliber encourager and a first class mother and wife. she was brass-tacks kinda gal, and often spoke before thinking (a quality i sheepishly claim as well. it's not unusual to see a size 8 shoe protruding from my mouth).

my mom was known as hot lips in high school. she was outgoing, engaging, hilarious and lit up a room when she entered. always unpredictable, always laughing, always loving.

i miss that lady more than i can describe. she was the best.


  1. Wow your mom sounds like a great lady and a wonderful mother. It must have been tough going through all of that but it must have been nice to have her by your side.

  2. ok you win!
    and i guess we're even on the cry-fest :)


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