I decided that I wanted to dedicate all of my TBT posts in the month of November to my mom, but I’ve had the hardest time thinking of what to write about her today. I spent all day at work, went to lunch with hubby, and then went straight to the in-laws’ for my MIL’s birthday, so I’m just sitting down to write and I’m feeling slightly pressured to come up with something both entertaining and moving in the next hour and a half.
This is one of my favorite pictures of my mom. I had never even seen it until after she died. I believe she’s about 16 years old in this photo and she just looks so happy. I have no idea who took it, where it was taken, or what the occasion was, but she looks stunning. Photos like this help me to remember her from before she got sick.
Some of the things I miss the most about her are the things that drove me absolutely out of my mind when she was alive. She used to call my cell phone while I was at work to tell me the most mundane things, so I asked her several times not to call unless it was an emergency. I explained that an emergency constituted an injury, accident, or fire. Otherwise, she was to wait until after 5:30pm to call me. She took that to mean that she should still call me during work hours if she wanted to tell me a story, but that she should preface her voicemail message with, “Erin, it’s mommy. It’s not an emergency…” She spoke so slowly and loudly, as if she were an old lady using the telephone for the first time and she wasn’t sure it was working or that I could hear her. She also always told me it was her – she couldn’t grasp the concept of caller ID or the fact that a daughter would recognize her own mother’s voice. I would give anything for one of those calls or saved voicemails now.
She would make “five minute friends” wherever she went. If she was waiting in line at the pharmacy, she would strike up a conversation with the person behind her. If she was at the doctor’s office, she would chat with the receptionist. I clearly do not take after her in this regard. She was the kind of person who always gave strangers a chance. She immediately liked everyone and they would have to give her a reason to think otherwise. After running her errands, she would then come home and tell me about Bob or Sue or whoever, and she would refer to them by first name giving me no frame of reference whatsoever. To say this frustrated me is an understatement. I never had any idea who she was talking about, and I would have to stop her and ask her who Bob was, and then she would get exasperated and explain he was some guy in the checkout line at 7-11 as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.
My mother was the loudest nose-blower I’ve ever met in my life, and I challenge anyone to try and beat her. She had horrible allergies all year round and would routinely blow her nose whenever it was bothering her, no matter what the circumstances or her location. Silent waiting room? No problem. Dinner out at a restaurant? It’s gotta be done. It was horribly embarrassing when we were out in public, and it was something that got on my nerves even when we were at home. When I say that people would turn around and stare, I’m not exaggerating. If she, my dad, and I were having a conversation and she pulled out a tissue, my dad and I would have to wait for her to finish because we wouldn’t be able to hear each other over her. Funny that I miss that now.