My mother was a beautiful woman, and a strong one. She suffered from rheumatoid arthritis for the last thirteen years of her life, eventually succumbing to the disease at the age of 58. We butted heads a lot in my teens and twenties, and I regret that we didn't have the opportunity to develop a more tempered relationship as adults. I can now look back and see how courageous her daily battles with her illness were, and how much effort it took to just get through her day.
Today, a memory came to mind of my mom, with her gnarled, swollen fingers, struggling to put my hair up in curlers so I would look nice for my first orchestra concert in high school, and of me, a bratty teenager, asking her to do one over because it wasn't laying just right . . . definitely not one of my finer moments.
If she were here today, I'd say to her: “Mom, I have kids now.” “I understand so much!”
Happy Mother's Day, Mom! Thank you for all the sacrifices you made for me. I love you!