According to Facebook on Mother's day, everyone else's mom is "the best". Well, I am here to prove you wrong, because to be "the best" there can only be one. And that woman, my friend, is MY MOTHER.
If I could hire a handyman, to live in my house, and do nothing but fix all the little things, I would hire my mom. Matt's pretty good, and will be at the level of her expertise eventually, but she's got a few years on him and a bit more variety. She can do tile, dry wall, molding, bricks, patching, painting, wallpaper, some plumbing, a lot of tinkering, patching, sanding, building, sewing, knitting, crochet, needle point, quilting, computer glitch fixing, window and door installation, gardening, landscaping, and really, any other project you lay before her. Don't believe me? I personally travelled with her from house to house as a kid, to assist her in wallpapering other people's homes. Yup, she got paid for her skills. People pay for her knitted winter hats. On top of these skills, she is a perfectionist, which is what makes her better than average on all of it. Still not convinced?
People often joked with Matt and I that we treated our very first, itty bitty, newborn like a third child. It's hard to be uptight around a newborn when you grow up around my mom. She has been called "the baby whisperer" by some. And she is that creepy lady who will walk up to a complete stranger on a flight, and ask to hold their screaming baby, only to have it sleeping soundly moments later. She fostered newborns for years. Day old babies were a common sight at our home growing up. I felt no anxiety leaving my little newborn with my mother, and she could always "hold the baby off" even if it was 4 hours, until I came back, so I could just nurse him. Her love of children does not stop at newborns (though she will insist it does), she is incredible with every one of her grandchildren. Her otherwise somewhat impatient demeanor melts away with those ones. She can prepare any meal in its entirety or clean the whole house with a child on her hip. She taught me to take "spirit walks", to enjoy the little things, and to indulge every once in a while. She teaches my boys those same things. Her attitude, as delusional as it may seem at times, is "anything is possible". And for her, I truly wonder if it is.
You may still be thinking to yourself, my mom is all that and more, but is she? Or WAS she? Because despite being nearly double my age, my mother continues to have equal my energy. And I say "equal" my energy because, I too have obnoxious amounts. If we compare to the average person, she probably has near double their energy at double their age. I'm not sure that she sleeps. Anything can be accomplished or completed under a time crunch. When I am ready for bed, she insists we continue painting, or cleaning, or cooking, because "we are almost finished".
Lastly, on top of her ridiculous number of amazing, and fine tuned skills, she is fun. People like her. When I run into friends from the past, one of their first questions is always, "and how is your mom?" with a smile on their face or followed by, "I love her." She did a keg stand at Leah and I's graduation from Graduate and Medical schools. She drove cross country to California with Leah. She will be the first one on and last one to leave the dance floor at any wedding (and it's not alcohol induced, she's not a big drinker). She turned a blind eye to our high school parties, allowing us some freedom. She traveled near and far for my swimming, often making impromptu road trips. She has a soft spot when it comes to animals. At one point we had 4 dogs, 2 cats, a snake, rabbit and who knows what else all at the same time. She is up for any adventure, like climbing a steep, steep hill to a cave in 100+ degree weather. She can horseback ride, really well. She always wants to join our kickball or softball recreational leagues. I can call her any random night of the week to go to a late movie. If I am really craving a meal or dessert, she will make it for me ASAP. My children never leave her house clean, unless she gives them a bath...which she loves to do. She is a closet philosopher and will talk all night about her theories on people, society, life. She's taught me there is a solution to every problem. She's taught me how to let go, and just say, "yes". She's taught me there is no competition too small. Or big. She's taught me when to care about the little things, and when to let go of them too. She's taught me to wonder at human nature, observe it (maybe a little too obviously at times), enjoy it, be confused by it, but never to judge.
In my Mother's mind and attitude, she is every bit as young and beautiful as she was 30 years ago. She still has just as much life ahead of her as she did back then. And for these reasons, she is truly THE BEST mom. Ever.