A message on my cell phone. “R U home?” I had seen it before. Out of the blue, without warning, “Mom” is pressed into service again. What does it matter that the “child” who is texting will be 36 on his next birthday. When a guy needs his “Mom” she has to be ready to serve. Some of you know that this “child” has a twin. He does the same thing, different way. It’s the day of his wedding, a couple of Saturdays ago. The family has come together in Bernardsville, NJ, for the wedding. We’ve sort of taken over the Bernards Inn, a venerable, lovely, old country in probably circa Revolutionary War. I have come into town to look for a comfortable pair of slippers at a great shoe store. I park my car across from the Inn (it is so old it has no handicapped rooms so I am staying in another Inn close by) and start walking towards the shoe store. Across the street I see my son walking around in front of the Inn. I call to him. “Yo, Ian, you want to go have breakfast?” His answer, “I am too nervous to eat. I’ll catch a cup of coffee in a bit. See ya at the wedding.” And off we go on our appointed rounds. Later, like 45 minutes before the wedding, I am on Route 80 to the church in Passaic. My cell phone rings. It’s Ian, “Yo Ma, we’re starving. Stop at a bagel store and please get me an everything bagel with cream cheese. Sascha wants a bagel with egg and cheese.” I am more than a little annoyed, even if I love him and he’s getting married in 45 minutes. “Ian, I don’t know where I am and I don’t know where the bagel stores are. If you had called me a half hour ago I would have stopped on Rte. 46 where I know where the bagel shops are.” Annoyed at me, he answers, “come on Ma, this is NJ. There is a bagel shop on every corner.”
Surfice it to say that I got off Rte. 80, drove around and couldn’t find a bagel store. I got back on Rte. 80 and got to the church about 20 minutes before the ceremony. I had found a gas station with a Dunkin’ Donuts and even though my children have been raised on “real bagels” this day, Dunkin’ Donuts would have to do. Sascha met me in the parking lot where I handed off the bagels and then hurried into the church to take my appointed seat. This will be a family story forever so I am not telling tales out of school. And what does this have to do with my topic “Mother for Life”. Let me digress. Do you think Cain and Able’s mom thought she would have to deal with her sons when they were adults. I can just hear her saying, “Cain, what were you thinking?” And Jacob and Easu? What of Noah’s wife all those days on the Ark. Don’t you think Noah’s sons didn’t come to their mother to complain? To ask for her help? And all through history. Haven’t sons always returned to their mothers in times of need.
And so it was this past weekend. “R u home?” on my cell phone. A son needed my help. And I, being the good mother I am, and knowing that when my children were born it was a lifetime commitment, was there. I was home. With a couch to crash on, a shower and clean towels. A washer and dryer to do his laundry and good food to eat. Things I know he likes, cooked the way he likes them cooked. I always keep things in my freezer just in case. And as he left this morning you know he left with a bag of food. Leftovers, packed in one-meal containers, plastic ware, paper plates, napkins, even little plastic condiment containers. There’s always a microwave somewhere to heat a decent meal up. He’s a salesman, on the road, staying in motels or roughing it in his Tahoe on occasion.
Someone asked my galpal, Nanette, recently, why I do the things I do, like dropping off delicious left-overs so my daughter can taste things she might not get to taste; or, showing up with something I found for her or the baby on my latest shopping expedition that I think they might like? My friend answered, because that’s what she does. That’s what Mothers do.
I like that answer and I thank Nanette for that remark. That’s what I do. That’s what Mothers do. We sign on for Life and we keep our commitments. And what’s more. We enjoy it. We love it. We quvell about it. My son, whether he realizes it or not, gave me a precious gift. Just as his twin brother did a couple of weeks ago. They gave me the gift of being an active mother. Having something that I alone could contribute to their lives. Something that would make them feel special and loved. That’s what Mother is all about. Thanks Sons.
Blessings and love,