Friday, May 12, 2017

I've Become My Mom. The Transition is Complete!



 
I miss my mom.

Since Sunday is Mother's Day, I'm going to write about my mother (Dad will get his turn on Father's Day). I've written anecdotal posts about both of them in the past, but today, I'm going to look at the good and bad in my relationship with her.

For the most part, we were close. I could tell her just about anything. She wouldn't judge me. Sometimes, I think she was too easy on me. I wasn't so easy on her. I didn't understand why she put up with so much crap from her sisters and a particular "friend" who was clearly a two-faced backstabber. As it turned out, I was right...but it took Mom a long time to see it.


I was furious when she loaned my favorite lamp to one of the tenants (my parents owned rental property)--who took it with them when they moved. Okay, they were evicted and it was a nasty, late-night scene that involved law enforcement and an angry neighbor who wanted to repo the car said tenant had bought from him but failed to pay for. I never let Mom forget that she had trusted a lowlife with my lamp. Pretty silly, huh?

Nobody was more proud than Mom when I sold my first novel. She wanted to go with me when I made my first trip to New York to meet with the publisher. I said no. I knew I'd be busy, that I couldn't take her with me to meetings--which was what she really wanted. It would have been viewed as unprofessional--but I'm embarrassed to admit that it wasn't the only reason I didn't want her to go along. From the day the book sold, Mom acted as if she were my co-author whenever we were in public, whenever I was asked about it. The publisher sent me roses. Mom wanted to know why she didn't get roses. She was joking, of course, but I overreacted. Why?


Because I'd always been dependent upon my parents in one way or another. That novel was the first thing I felt I'd done entirely on my own. It was mine, and I didn't want to share that accomplishment--with anyone.

But that wasn't true. I did all of the research and writing, yes. I found my agent on my own, yes. But I was a single mother with a toddler who had lived in Jefferson County, where public transportation at the time was almost nonexistent. I worked downtown, twenty miles away--and I couldn't drive. The only solution was to move into St. Louis, closer to the downtown area, so I could take a bus to work. But that would mean having to find a daycare for Collin or hire a babysitter to stay with him at home while I worked. I didn't like either option. I'd seen too many stories on the news about children harmed, killed or abducted by babysitters or daycare workers.


Mom and Dad sold their home and rented a place in south St. Louis for all of us. I could go to work knowing Collin was safe while I was at work. They gave up a home that was paid for and would have given them security in their retirement so I could work and Collin could have safety and security. In truth, I could not have written and sold Alexander's Empire without them. 

Happy Mother's Day, Mom. I wish you and Dad were still here with us.


12 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks...but I want to hear about everyone's moms! Come on, share--all of you!

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  2. Happy Mother's day Norma. You're an inspiration to many.

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    1. Collin would find that really funny, Eve--but thank you!

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  3. Sorry about your mom being gone. Sorry her sisters and that one friend were rubbish to her. Not cool.

    How old were you with the lamp? Was it really about the lamp or your frustration in her trusting wankers?

    Understandable about how you felt with regard to taking your mom and this being your first big thing on your own.

    Touching post, Norma on what she did for you and how she supported you as a young mom. You're a great mom to your son now. You're one good cookie. That's for sure.



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    1. The lamp...would you believe I was in college at the time? I was only home on weekends, which was why Mom thought it would be okay to let that woman "borrow" my lamp. I was a better judge of character than Mom was--I got that trait from Dad, who could spot a phony a mile away.

      Collin and I have had our ups and downs, too. But we're in a good place now, thankfully.

      And thank you, Ivy!

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    2. Ups and downs, yes, as someone healing, I've seen lots of those. Very cool that you got your dad's keen senses.

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  4. Your Mum and Dad were wonderful, sounds like you and I were the lucky ones to have really good parents, not all are so lucky. Happy mother's day Norma ✨

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    1. Thank you, Grace!

      I regret not appreciating my parents more when they were alive. I wasn't always a good daughter.

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  5. That's the good thing about parents Norma, they​ love us whatever.. which is a good thing 😊

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    1. Yes...they put up with us, even when we make them cry.

      When Collin was little, I was launching my career and traveled often. I put in long hours, even after I left my day job. We were talking earlier, and I asked him if he ever felt I had ignored him then. He answered, "Sometimes."

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  6. What wonderful people! You were so lucky to have them and I know you've lavished that same kind of love you learned from them on Collin.

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