The Answer To “Why?” (And Other Things I Learned From Mom)

{ Mom and Me (photo by Indy) | Los Gatos, CA | August 2015 }

I write so much, every single day of my life, that it’s not often that I find myself at a loss for words. Spoken words, sure – I’m like the Jedi GrandMaster of saying exactly what I seriously did not mean (and then turning red)  – but with the written word I’m usually pretty good and getting across whatever point it is I’m trying to make. But when SheKnows asked me to write a post about “the greatest lesson my mom has ever taught me” I sat there at my keyboard for awhile staring at the blinkblinkblink of the cursor for way longer than I’m used to – because…I don’t know, that’s seems a huge proclamation to make. It feels like putting a finger on what’s wonderful and special and enormous about my relationship with my mom, and I think everyone knows that the mother/daughter relationship defies those kinds of easy answers.

When I talk about my mother to people who don’t know her, I refer to her as an angel, and as hokey as that sounds, I mean it. She is an actual angel; a person who wanders through the world shedding light and good intentions and support for others wherever she goes. It’d be easy to describe the way she sees the world as “childlike” – she routinely answers the question “Why?” with “Why not?” and cares exactly zero about “age-appropriateness” (ugh) or what other people think about her; she just wants to do the things that make her feel good and happy and alive, and so she does. But she also happens to be a badass lawyer, so “childlike” doesn’t really apply here. Like, at all.

She has this little sister, my aunt Trudy, who – according to my mom and pretty much everyone else in their little Canadian town (except for Trudy herself) – has always been the “star” of the family: the one who can sing like Janis Joplin, and who’s been pushed up onto any stage she’s found herself in front of practically since she could walk. My mother always wanted to sing and perform – more than anything, I think – but you should hear her talk about what it was like growing up with Trudy: it’s like taking your standard-issue case of sibling rivalry, flipping it over, and sticking a sunflower on top.

She’s just so damn proud when the people she loves do well. And I suspect that it’s largely because of this quality that she takes such joy in this world. There’s nothing that’ll suck the happiness out of you more quickly than jealousy, and nothing that will make you feel more powerful than supporting others in the search for what they love.

I love my mom so much. So much that when I sat down with my fingers on the keyboard I didn’t know how to even begin to wrap up all that love into a post about “what my mom taught me.” The words that I wrote for SheKnows don’t even scratch the surface – not even close – but still: they’re a pretty good start.

{ You can check out my post here. Happy almost-Mother’s-Day. }

powered by chloédigital