No one will ever love you like your mother. I heard this saying years ago, and the words didn't attack my heart until August 18, 2012, when we lost our mom. With Mother's Day around the corner, I am flooded with her memories.
I remember so many things, but one that came to the surface was when we would come home from school, we would open the back door and yell, "Mom, I am home." If she didn't answer, we panicked because she was always at the kitchen table folding stacks of clothes. We couldn't miss her smile and then asking us could you please be her legs and deliver the freshly folded clothing to the various bedrooms.
When it came time for the dreaded report cards to go home, our dear mom would say, "Hide them until Monday because I feel you may be grounded this weekend." Then, there were those evenings when we would all gather around her and listen to her read Little Women.
She tried so hard to curl my hair when I was young. She tried pin curls, and when that didn't work, she would pack me a lunch and send me to Cinderella Hair Salon on Ross Street for my annual perm. I wanted to look like Shirley Temple, but I looked more like a Brillo Pad.
So many funny memories and yet so many treasured memories. Trying to get the six kids ready for Sunday Mass was always an ordeal. We were usually late as we paraded down the aisle of St. Joseph Church. I could not sit next to my brother Tony for apparent reasons.
Mom was not a fan of cooking. It is a bit overwhelming when you are cooking for eight every day. But, I loved to cook, so I knew that was one area I could help her make her Sunday sauce and throw in every meat we had during the week, pork chops, chicken, sausage, and meatballs which always made our Sunday sauce days memorable. The dinner seating was always mom at one end of the large table and dad at the other. We were seated on the opposite sides according to who needed, again, to be separated. Mom always made you think you were her favorite, except we all knew Johnny was.
I remember when I had my daughter, Jenn. Mom came to the recovery room, looked at me, and said, "Honey, are you ok?" I looked at her kind face and saw her love and relief in her eyes, and said yes; she kissed me and left. I loved calling her almost every day just to hear her say, "Hi honey, how are you today? I don't ever remember her being mad at us, which had to be quite a feat. The one word you never said and considered as bad as any word you hear today was jackass. I used that word, and of course, Tony did too, and he had a tasting party with Ivory Soap.
I have so many memories of my mom, and I know my five siblings share many and yet have their own of our dear mom.
Our last memories of her were at my brother Tony's home, sitting in her favorite chair from our family home. She would always smile and say how glad she was to see us. We never left her without a kiss and, "I love you, mom. "I hope my words enkindled in your heart memories of your mom. Remember, no one will ever love you like your mom. I will continue to miss that beautiful lady for the rest of my life.
Happy Mother's Day to all of our moms in our hearts and those moms blessed to be with their children on Mother’s Day.