She wasn't a stereotypical Mom who smothered you with hugs and kisses. She was not a Mom who kissed your bo-bo to make it all better, then hugged you tight as she wiped the tears from your eyes. My Mom's style was a bit more pragmatic, she'd look me square in the eye and sternly say; "Dry those tears or I'll really give you something to cry about". Of course with those words I'd suck it up and get over "it" for fear that if I didn't something really "bad" was going to happen to me... and then get on with whatever I'd been up to.
Don't get me wrong, my Mom was never cruel and though I often wished she were more like my friend's Moms, I always loved my Mom and I knew she loved me. What I didn't know and could never have appreciated, until I myself had a lot of life under my belt, was that my Mom's style of parenting, which was sometimes harsh and demanding, but at the same time very hands off, was to be the greatest gift she could give to me, a gift that has gotten me through many rough times.
Life had always been tough for my Mom, but God had given her the character traits she would need to survive such a life. Even though my Mom was a good looking woman, she was not into frills and fluff... she knew next to nothing about make-up, hairstyles or fashion. But she was thrifty, practical, and tenacious. Add that to responsible, self sufficient, independent, strong and feisty, and she had everything she needed to survive and thrive as a woman. And as a mother she modeled these trait to me and was a very special example of just how important these traits could be to a woman.
Of course to some, my Mom's gift might seem like a wide-eyed 6 year old child finding nothing but a coat and mittens under the tree on Christmas morning. Sure it's practical, but not too exciting, and it certainly didn't excite me much when I was a kid. So I didn't really appreciate what a gift I had been given, and for many years longed for the bright and shiny gifts my friends Moms had put under their Christmas trees.
BUT, I have come to understand that when its freezing outside, the snow is falling, and the most exciting thing in a 6 year olds life is making a snow angel - it's the coat and mittens that will protect her and enable her to enjoy the magic of the cold winter day.
Happy Mother's Day, Thanks Mom, I Love You!!!