Mother’s Day is tomorrow. It’s weird too, because I don’t necessarily think of me on Mother’s Day. (Which is pretty darn unusual since I’m extremely self-centered and the center of my universe!). I think of my mother instead.
My mother, Germaine Gorman Wynne, in better days when she remembered all the awful things we did–and the good things too!
She’s no longer with us. Alzheimer’s took her away—and took her away long before she departed her earthly existence. I really never thanked her enough—and trust me; I definitely gave her quite a few gray hairs on the frosted head of hers!
Here she is with some of the grandkids–isn’t she a young grandmother? I’ll tell ya–she looked great!
I was the challenging one. The one who, at 5 years old, threw her engagement ring in a pile of rocks in the alleyway next to our home in Ozone Park. And yes—I did find it shortly after throwing it, but it hurt to sit for a few days.
I was the “mouthy”—or in nicer terms, the “cheeky” child. The one who got in trouble twice –from any given nun at school and miraculously, again from my mother upon arriving back from school. It was usually for talking in class or questioning the actions from one particularly evil Sr. Mary Josephita.
That’s right–after getting in major trouble from these lovelies, I would get it again from my mom! But–she managed to keep me on the straight and narrow!
I was the one who got drunk at a family party at the young age of 18. Vomiting all over my bed room from too many Singapore Slings.
Ouch–I had many more than just one of these things…..
She never said anything while she cleaned the mess in the room. But when I woke up the next afternoon at 3:00 PM, her only words were “I hope you learned your lesson.” I did.
I didn’t even make it to the bathroom–but she cleaned the mess up and made sure I learned my lesson by being silent and not yelling. I learned my lesson well!
And…who could forget as she, ever-frustrated with me, held ice cubes to my “lady area” after my DIY failed bikini wax! ( In case your memory needs to be refreshed:
I thank her for the values that she gave me—and for the work ethic. I also want to apologize for making her ruin so many wooden spoons!
My grandmother was another woman I miss terribly and wish she were here too! She lived her 98 years in full-circle. Departing on the day she came into this world.
My grandmother, Margaret Crowley Wynne, a very strong force in my life. She is still missed!
She was strong and had a quick mind and was always the voice of reason with her beautiful lilting brogue!
While we were at family parties drinking beer, wine, “Singapore slings”, my sweet grandmother was on the sidelines enjoying her tea–even on a hot summer day!
Enough of the sentimentality. I also want to take the time to celebrate all the moms out there!
Especially moms who try so hard but just miss being perfect—this is for you! Trust me, I will NEVER win a mother of the year award–ever! But–I try hard to be the best mom I can be. Many “Oops” moments, but the kids still love me–and that’s all that counts!
A real Mother’s Day card should read:
Mommy, Mommy, soft and pudgy
You changed my diapers—both wet and fudgy.
You kicked my ass when I was bad
And gave me hugs when I was sad
You cheered me on—even when I lost
You were my support—at any cost
We had our times during good and bad
You were the best damn mom that a kid could have!
My words in a poem!
To those of us who are moms, there were times, I’m sure, when we questioned our mothering ability. I was not a conventional mom. I breastfed my kids until they reached the age of three. Yes. I did! Apparently, unbeknownst to me, this is now called “attachment” parenting. (Everything has to have a label). For me, I was just too damn lazy to wean. I went through my share of public scrutiny from people who couldn’t mind their business. Unfortunately for them, they had no idea what they were up against when it came to me and my big mouth.
I was the one who allowed my children to stay up all hours of the night during the summer. After all, there was no school the next day and summertime is when the kids should enjoy those long evenings. Catching fireflies.
Kids need to spend long summer nights collecting fireflies or just…
Stargazing on the lawn! (pic from Lovethispic.com)
Lying on a soft, grassy backyard and stargazing on a clear night—kids need to see the beauty of the universe. Playing Manhunt and Capture the Flag with their neighborhood friends. (Which I might add the moms of Navesink Drive were most delightfully unconventional in this way as well! Nancy, Margaret, Sandy, Stacey, Dotty,Cathy, Ann and Mags (even though the last two lived on other streets—the most fun moms in Brandon Farms). Not “making” the kids march to bed at the magical hour of twilight—how awful would that be?
Here’s to my NYC bestie, Jeannie. Who raised three great boys! Together we were a great tag team by actually disciplining our children with louder, but firm voices and created exact boundaries of behavior. Trust me that was pretty unconventional mothering within the confines of the “Earth Mother” personalities that we hung with back in the day. I miss our days of loading all six kids in the minivan, heading out to Long Beach and staying there until after rush hour!
Me and Jeannie. Jeannie is one of the best moms I have ever known! Here we are in Inwood Hill Park. Halloween–late 1980’s. That’s fake blood coming out of my mouth–it was Halloween. Oh god, I’m so skinny in that pic.
Here’s to all my Irish Dance mom friends! The moms who gave up many evenings driving the kids to practices; spending weekends at competitions.
To the many moms who put those dance dresses first!
…and spent the time at all those competitions. There are thousands upon thousands of you! You are appreciated! (Take a look at Oona’s face after winning a first place trophy back in the day. She’s with Bernard Hynes, Dublin A.D.C.R.G. I was that embarrassing mom who took these pics when my daughter won!)
The moms who gave up that new pair of shoes and much more in order to spend the money on their competitor instead—between wigs, shoes, dresses, cummerbunds, vests, hotels, gas, entry fees, airfare, and other expenses, you are appreciated! That cost turned your child into a poised and confident adult!
Here’s to the baseball, basketball and soccer moms. Here’s to your fierce determination in getting your child to a practice or game and avoiding a traffic ticket! Here’s to the time spent driving to and from those same games and practices. Here’s to knowing that your children are not roaming around idly. Here’s to you sports mom!
Hey sports moms–you are honored!
We unconventional sports moms allowed our children that awful drink called “soda”. It didn’t kill them! (Jake at a little league game in NYC and he doesn’t drink soda anymore)
Here’s to the moms who allow their children a “well” day off from school. Yeah. That’s right. A “well” day! The moms who give a little sigh give their student child time at home for an extra day to finish a difficult school project. Or just take a day to spend some extra quality time with them when they are feeling a bit under the weather!
Rested and happy after a “well” day?? (actually it was his first day of kindergarten–but I needed to use a happy photo–sorry!)
Whether a “well” day off from school or a sick day, kids always want their mothers to be there! And we all know moms can be doing other things–but the child is always number one!
Here’s to the moms who forgot to purchase the much-needed peanut butter and had to run to the store in her PJ’s or hair rollers to make school lunch in record time.
Here’s to the moms who stand up for their kids. The moms who teach their children good manners and to be good citizens. The moms, who, when teaching their children to open doors for adults, and then don’t acknowledge the child’s actions, politely say to the rude adult “Excuse me, I’m teaching my child to be a good and polite citizen. Could you help by saying thank you”?
Here’s to the single moms, who have it difficult at times, juggling work and home and child-rearing with no help. You are honored!
Here’s to the moms who have lost children. You will always be a mother and your pain is heartbreaking, and you are greatly honored for your strength!
Here’s to the “two mommies”. You are much-applauded in my book for sure. You go through struggles that many of us just find horrific. The fact that people don’t allow you your freedom to be drives me nuts. Two mommies can be better than one! Your children are doubling their fun and you should have the support of all mommies!! I hope that one day you are accepted by everyone—even those so-called false “Christians”.
I’ve oftentimes heard that being a mother is a thankless job.
And motherhood is an unpaid job–but the rewards are many!
I disagree—being a mother is a job that is extremely thankful. I am thankful as a mother that I have three wonderful children who grew up to be strong and fiercely independent and successful adults. They haven’t had it easy and they have weathered some life issues that no child should have to endure—but thanks to love and care and firm discipline, they came out fine! I am so thankful!
So moms everywhere, these flowers are for all of you! I love you all and admire you all! We are a strong group of women—responsible for tomorrow’s leaders. Let’s support and cheer each other on!!
Flowers for all moms because you are deserving of them!
And here’s to the woman who gets my vote for 2015 Mother of the Year! Toya Graham! She is the true essense of a mother. A loving but strict mom. A mom who doesn’t care what others think of her disciplining ways. I love this mom!!! Despite the danger she could have put herself in, she still pushed through those crowds in Baltimore to discipline her son and get him out of harm’s way! You rock n’ roll!
My “Mother of the Year 2015” goes to Toya Graham! She is the best!
In honor of all moms, the mother of all “mom” songs by The Intruders! XOXOXOXOXO. Have a blessed and happy mother’s day all!