MY INTERVIEW WITH MOM
This is Mother’s Weekend. I’m pausing my new series on addiction to write for Mother’s Day. I have gone to The Source . . . Mom. I called my parents phone number in Apache, a very familiar number; it’s been their number for 50 years.
Saturday morning, 7:30am.
Me: Hi Mom, how are you this morning?
Mom: Oh, just getting around to help with a funeral dinner. (followed by a discussion of the community of Apache, friends, and small talk)
Me: Mom, I’m writing my Red Dirt Chronicles article for the weekend and I want to interview you, is that okay?
Mom: Um, well alright, if you need to.
Me: How long have you been a mom?
Mom: How old are you?
Mom: There ya go, I’ve been a mom for 56 years and 10 days.
Me: How many kids do you have?
Me: So, what’s the big deal about being a mom, I mean, what is the blessing?
Mom: Oh wow, there are so many. (pause) You know, I think the best part is just being ‘Momma’. When the kids are little they need you and depend on you. Getting to be Momma and take care of all the little things, that’s a blessing. Then, when your kids get older there’s just a lot of pride.
Me: Do you have some special memories?
Mom: So many! Gee whiz, let me think . . . Each of my three children and all the little stages of life hold a special memory. I think my favorite memories are the little things, the ordinary things. But there’s just some memories that are special to me, for example, I remember when
Danyne (little sister) was sitting on the back porch crying and carrying on because she thought I left, but I had simple gone down to the creek to work on something. I remember you kids and those goofy mood rings, styles that came and went, and how much you loved hats when you were two years old. I remember your brother in nothing but cowboy boots, cowboy hat, and his only clothing was his gun holster.
Me: So what is your advice to young moms who are just starting out in the kid business?
Mom: (pause) Well, I’d say you need to make a priority of always having your meals together, especially the evening meal. Be patient, I wish I would have done a better job being patient…
Me: Mom, I don’t have memories of you being impatient with us.
Mom: Really? Well, that’s good; I just think that’s really important. Also, be interested in what your kids are doing and be willing to listen to your kids. Be glad you have your kids. And teach your kids your values, I remember when they wanted to get your sister signed up for some program and she was really small, I remember it was important for me to teach her myself and I felt that was important. I told em, “No thanks, I’m just gonna keep her with me.”
Me: So you didn’t sign up for all the things you could have?
Mom: Oh no, it’s really important to teach your children. I think it was pre-school or something that I passed on. I felt like that was my job. I think, as I look back, that taking time for you three kids was important. I am glad I did that. Also, your dad and I had our disagreements about discipline for you kids, but we never disagreed in front of the kids. That’s important.
Me: Okay, anything else?
Mom: Yes, I’d tell the young moms to take time and stop being too busy. Play games with your kids, listen to them, they grow up fast.
Me: What about your own mom. Did you try to copy any of the things she did?
Mom: Well, there’s no comparison between us. My mom was just the best. She was the best at using her talents to help her children and bless them. She was always willing to do a little bit extra, to sacrifice for her children. I remember seeing a shirt at Calvert’s Western Store in Kingman and rushing home to tell her about it. She listened and what she did next was amazing. She drove up there and studied that shirt, then came home, cut a pattern out of a newspaper and sewed me a shirt just like the one at the store… it had conches and everything. And I remember a State playoff game for the high school. The weather was kinda bad so Mom loaded the trunk with weights and took a bunch of us up near Kansas City for the State game. I don’t remember much about the game, but I remember my mom doing that for us.
Me: How old are you Mom?
Mom: I’m 74.
Me: Anything else?
Mom: Well, I’d say this, and it makes my stomach upset just to think about, it’s the idea of one of my losing one of my children. I just don’t think I could bear it. As a mother I think about Mary, mother of Jesus, and the sacrifice of the only Son. It’s really hard to envision the meaning of sacrifice, but when I think of the sacrifice of Christ and that Mary saw her baby on the cross, it breaks my heart. The price of sin is heavy.
Me: Thanks Mom, I love you.
Mom: I love you too.