It seems like it has been forever since the second Sunday of May — Mother’s Day — in the year 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic. That was also the first Mother’s Day that we put flowers on my mother’s grave rather than delivering her a hanging basket in person. I sure wish things were different on both fronts.
Over the years in the newspaper business — sneaking up on 40 now — much has been written in this space concerning the day we honor our moms.
There have been comments on hair — particularly my moms that was huge when my two brothers and I were small, and would be wrapped up similar to a hornet’s nest with toilet paper and bobby pins at bedtime. My wife’s “do” has also made the news, especially one year when it was an extra light color and a shifty car salesman called her Mrs. Bleach during his spill, and kept right on talking.
We’ve also discussed orchids as corsages for moms going to Sunday morning church, and the more elaborate “backyard” variety of nosegay for moms lounging by the pool on Sunday afternoon. Back in the old days, the A&P Grocery Store, where I practically grew up since both parents worked there, sold the church-going variety, in little white boxes with cellophane windows, that moms like Rachel, who I was fortunate to claim as mine, proudly pinned to their bosoms before Sunday School.
In the 28 years since she gave birth to our daughter, moms like Danny, whom I’m fortunate to claim as my wife, have enjoyed the backyard variety that in most years have to be tied on to the top of her shoulder, since they tend to be a bit more elaborate, elongated, enlarged... than the those from the A&P!
The fact of the matter is that this week the roses at our house, and lots of other houses too, are “running” absolutely wild. I’m thinking, and I told my wife I was thinking this too, I can make a really elaborate “old country rose” corsage come Sunday.
She was less than impressed and commented something along the lines of being fine without a flower on her shoulder, or anywhere else this holiday. One would think that after 40 years of marriage she would know better than to think I would ever let her go unappreciated on her special day. Plus tomorrow is her birthday, and she claims she isn’t celebrating that this year either, but, again, I beg to differ.
I’m certain that the talk of allergies and itchy eyes I’ve been hearing at the breakfast table this week is simply an attempt to use reverse psychology on me, and as of this writing it is working very well.
If she really meant that she didn’t want to celebrate she could simply say the “magic word” and I would comply, but she told me several years ago that if she didn’t know the magic word by then she probably would never know the magic word. She’s probably right!
So once again the second Sunday in May is upon us and it is our duty as children, no matter our age, to celebrate the women who brought us into this world. You may be sitting beside yours on the pew at church, or you may be sitting across from her at the dinner table. You may be visiting in the hospital, or the nursing home, or even the cemetery, or you may only be able to visit by phone.
Whatever the case may be, understand that a text message, an e-mail, a card in the real mail, or even a silly post on social media, may seem, at the time, to be enough, but nothing beats a visit in person, or her hearing your voice when she answers your call. Spoken words, you know, can work all kinds of magic.
I sure wish I still had that option.
That said, I love you mom. I know you can hear me, even though I can’t hear you.
Love you too, Danny, happy birthday and happy Mother’s Day. Pick out a good, strong, shirt for Sunday — a big ole nosegay is in the making!
Unless, of course, you’ve discovered the magic word!