Dear Dr. Laura,
Let me tell you about my mom. I recently had the opportunity to speak about her at her retirement party. Prior to her working for the county, she had a much tougher job - SHE WAS OUR MOM. And while Mom stayed home and took care of us little rug rats, my dad worked hard. We had summers filled with swimming lessons, reading, the library, the mall, a vacation, and most of all Mom's attention. Dad was equally great. Together they were loving and supportive.
In my teens, my mom was diagnosed with MS. At first it was a bit of a joke. We would roll meatballs and her hands would curl at the movement and close over the meatball. She would open her hand with the other and it would close again. Over the last twenty years, I have watch this disease take over her body. My beautiful, active mom can no longer stand. Even with her many problems, she always went to work. Each morning, she got up at 5:30 to put on her makeup and did her hair and because she does not move around is mindful of her calories.
Sometimes she comments she is not that great, but she is to me. She instilled values, love, comfort and support and has been my sounding board for major decisions. I was a terrible teen and young adult and regularly told her I hated her, but she kept me out of trouble. I was fortunate Mom knew more, loved me and cared enough to block me from the harm I would have done.
I have so much love and respect for my wonderful parents, they gave the greatest example of how two people can work together and provide a great life if they make that a priority. And lastly, everywhere we went in a car, Mom would always run her hand through Dad's hair.