Today is my mom's birthday. I would say that she is 29, but that would be ridiculous since I am 29. So we'll say she is, uh, 49. Yeah.
My mom has never been a traditional mom in the traditional sense. I always had birthday parties. She came to all of my soccer games. She watched all of the games that I was a cheerleader at and brought cookies to the guys that got double figures during the games (which is the reason we took State so many years). That seems traditional, however, she also would take me to movies spontaneously on a Wednesday night...a SCHOOL night...just because we could. She took me to Ed Debevics whenever Brian Gilliam broke up with me in high school. (I think it was something like 8 times) She let friends stay over as late as they wanted, but my curfew was 11pm. She took me on a leaf peeping tour when I graduated from BYU, where the closest person in age to me on the tour WAS my mom. We don't do traditional around here.
I was raised an only child, but she had the benefit of getting rid of me during the summer when I would go and stay with my dad. It just occurred to me a few years ago what a GREAT deal she had in that. She won't tell me what she did during the summers, but I can imagine she looked forward to it. I don't have a favorite meal that my mom makes, but she was ok with that, and instead just took me to Carlos O'Brien's for my welcome home meal when I was in college. She taught me to make my own breakfast when I was five years old. I could do my own laundry at an early age. She made a dish called "Mommy Special" that consisted of rice, stir fried veggies, and...tuna. It was probably supposed to be healthy.
My mom was the mom to everyone that I went to high school with. Everyone called her mom. She knew everyone and loved everyone. When I would come home from work, she would often be talking on the phone to one of my friends, giving advice. She has been a die hard Phoenix Suns fan since about 1976. Sometimes growing up she would be watching tv, and all of a sudden jump up and slam a shoe down on the floor, killing a cockroach. There was always a shoe in the family room for cockroach killing. When I was about 7, she left me home alone for a few minutes to run an errand. I was watching tv and a cockroach climbed up my foot. Imagine the screams and terror of a 7 year old. It was a scarred for life sort of thing, but I have kind of gotten over it. Being a mother of an almost 7 year old, I'm sure I have passed along some things that will scar him for life as well.
My mom and I like to do a lot of things together, but, we have the most fun when we go house hunting and critique really huge houses. We pretend to be snobby (with no room to be) about what we like and don't like and wonder at the choices of previous owners. We also like movies and popcorn and diet coke. And Mexican food. She is not a fan of pasta. She once had a competition with my grandfather over who could eat the most cookies in a year. Or something like that.
I could say that I have had her all to myself, but she is universally the favorite aunt of all of my cousins. She took all of my Phoenix cousins on dates for their birthdays every year, thus winning them over for eternity.
I love you, Mom. Maybe you are more traditional than we thought. :)