Monday, October 15, 2012

My Mother

To begin telling you about my mother feels like someone has asked me a trick question. They want to know about my mother, I ask how much time they have. It would literally take me hours to paint a picture about my mother's life. I guess everyone says that about their mother, so why is mine superior to any other mother. I'm sure she isn't but I haven't lived with all those other mothers, just mine. I only know the sacrifices she has endured in her life and some of those for me.

My Mother was born into a family with twelve siblings total. She is one of only four girls born into her family. I remember mom telling me they never had an indoor bathroom until she was in high school. We have it so easy now days. I feel blessed to have been born in the era of indoor plumbing. Yicks! She graduated from high school but got married shortly afterwards, she never did attend college.

She was married to my father for several year, somewhere around 13 years I believe. It wasn't a good marriage and she divorced him during a time when it was frowned upon for a woman to question a man. You get married, you stay married till the day you die. Was my mother was a rebel? Not even close, she just had a brain and dared use it. I applaud her for her bravery. How hard it must have been to stand up and take action. In fact, looking back at all the many things my mother did, she was either very brave or scared as hell. None the less,  she had children to raise and did what she needed to do in order to take care of use.

She worked for a number of years in the small town where we lived learning how to become independent so she could take care of use girls on her own. When we moved out of state, we were on our own. She raised us girls miles away from the comfort of her mother's arms. I can't imagine how hard that must have been. There must have been many lonely days for her working, coming home to three little girls every day. I can relate as I raised my three on my own.

Mom has been married a number of times, some just didn't work out, a few passed away. She is back to being single again in her later years of life. I hate to see her alone but she has out-lived her past two husbands. One of her sisters has died and five brothers has passed away. Our family reunions are dwindling in size each year. It's sad to see this happen, it's more than sad, I hate it. I can remember when I was little and everyone would come to my Grandma's house for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Now those were the times. The house was bursting with aunts, uncles and us kids. It seemed liked there were thousands of us munchkins all running around. How I loved those times. We were a close family, always have been. I can't say the same for today. We have grown apart so much, some family I hardly see. It breaks my heart to see this happen. I'm not sure what can be done if anything, so I hold onto my childhood memories. They make me smile.

I was six years old when mom divorced my father and moved us to Las Cruces, NM. We spent the next seven years in New Mexico which became home. I loved it there with all my heart. The terrain, the people, the Church, all of it. I felt as though I belonged there. I know mom felt the same way because when we moved to Colorado she said she wanted to retire in New Mexico. That was fine by me. Mom worked for  a company that contracted with NASA when lived in NM. I loved everything about her job, especially when she would take us to work and show us all the latest equipment being used. They had huge refrigerator-sized computers back then we got to see through a glass window. Not sure why they were all closed off, perhaps all the heat and noise they generated. They weren't the quietest machines but during the holidays one of the computer tech guys programmed one to play a Christmas tune. Now that was pretty cool. Mom was always bringing home NASA paraphernalia stuff. I loved all the pictures she brought home of the Apollo flights with their crew, some of them were of the capsule in the water, the launchpad and the lunar module. I am not sure if this is where I got my love for moon or not. I remember seeing the first spacecraft in the sky as it orbited the earth.  I was six at the time. My Uncle Jay and I stood outside as we watched it come into view, cross the sky then disappear out of sight. It was nothing more then a flashing red dot in the sky, we see this all the time today, back then it was a miracle. Everything mom brought home from work I wanted to keep. I was a secret astronaut.

We left Las Cruces and went to Albuquerque for a couple of years. Mom got a job promotion so we sold our cute little home and rented an apartment in the city. I didn't care for it much here other than the balloon festival.  Then mom got a different job in Colorado, so we moved again. She bought us another home which was lovely and my grandma came to live with us. By this time Gayle had left and was living with my dad, Jeanne had graduated from high school so it was just mom and me. She worked two jobs to get us this home which I loved but hated Colorado. It wasn't like New Mexico at all. Mom was hearing allot of grief from her siblings about who was going to take care of my grandma since my Uncle Jay whom she lived with had died. I think because mom was single they thought it would be easier for her. She sold our home in Colorado and moved back to Utah. She took care of grandma until she passed away in 1981 or 1982.

She has lived in Utah since the 80's, married spent a few winters in Arizona but called Utah her home. Mom has always put her family first before herself. Her moving back to Utah is a great example of the love she has shown for her mother. I can't remember a time when she wasn't doing something for someone no matter how big or small the task might be. She has helped me so many times throughout my life and still does. Just having her near me gives me the comfort I need. Some days I just need to hear her voice, some days I want to curl up on her lap and forget how hard life can be. Mom has had a few heart attacks over the past several years. Her heart is currently working at 35%. I'm not sure how long it will last. I feel lucky to have these days with her and cherish our time together.

In my family, my mom is the funnest and probably the most favorite aunt of all. Mom, us girls and several other friends would make chocolate candy galore during Christmas every year, she took the boys (cousins of mine) white river rafting every summer, we went on so many camping trips with my cousins I can't remember them all, saw more country western concerts than I care to admit, and the list goes on. If she wasn't doing something with us girls, she was off with her friends, siblings or nieces and nephews. I don't think she EVER slowed down. That is mom. The happiest, fun-loving, good, smart, kind, woman and mother anyone could ever ask for. I love you mom.