Saturday, May 11, 2013

Why I love my mother

My mother posted on her Facebook status that she didn't want anything for Mother's Day. I assume that includes a card or nice note. I want to respect her stance against the commercialism of Mother's Day. So I decided to take the indirect approach.

Yup, that's right Mum, I'm going to blog about you. And you can't stop me. :)

One of the many things I love about my mother is her legendary compassion. I have to admit, I haven't always been receptive when that care has been directed at me. It's possible that I've used the moniker "Smother" when trying to stave off her attempts to keep me safe and healthy. I probably shouldn't do that.

From the time she was little, my mum has nurtured creatures and nursed them to health. When she was six years old, it was birds and mice and snakes. In her early twenties it became psychiatric patients, then her three children (which wasn't much of a transition). Later it was women in distress. Now it's homeless youth and an excessively vocal Italian greyhound.

My mother has taught my independent little soul to care for people, practically and tangibly. One of my favourite weeks of my whole life was the one when she stayed with us right after Campbell was born. The overwhelming responsibility of keeping a newborn baby thriving seemed joyfully doable with my mum in charge. Amidst the enigma of my post-partum state, my mother's wisdom made all the difference.

My mum is one of the most fun people I know. Nobody can make a trip to the drug store an adventure like Mary Dunlop. In fact, she's the most fun person to shop with—ever. She fondles all the clothing and textures, admires the colours, expresses joy at an unusual purse or new scent. I don't generally like to shop but I love to shop with my mother.

My mother loves words. Right now, we usually have about three "Words with Friends" games going at  once and I'm ashamed to say, she beats the tar out of me more often than I beat her. But it's not just word games. She savours words like a foodie trying new dishes. I owe my vocabulary—and probably my writing career—to my mother's passion for words. She loves to tell stories and I appreciate her attention to the details. I really do. I tease her about it but I like to hear exactly how the events and conversations went down.

She loves beauty. From nature to technology, jewels to animals, she fully appreciates beautiful things in this world. In the post-Victorian Calvinistic era she grew up in, a love of beauty was sometimes thought of as vanity, but I think my mother's love of beauty is one of the most spiritual, amazing things about her.

My mother is a powerful, beautiful, creative, brilliant and fascinating woman. She sets the bar high when it comes to social justice and achieving one's dreams. There's never a dull moment with her and I don't tell her or show her nearly enough how great I think she is. It's too bad she didn't want gifts for Mother's Day because she deserves to be honoured with gifts. But I appreciate the strength of her stance just as I appreciate the strength of her personhood. I am so thankful that I've inherited many of her wonderful qualities.

If you happen to see my mum today, tell her how much I love and admire her.

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