A major problem that has followed me throughout my life is that my mom is infinitely cooler than I am. She has impeccable music taste, an endless capacity to solve people's problems, an uncanny ability to stay current, and - not that this matters - but she's absolutely beautiful. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of my high school friends really just hung out with me to spend time with her.
So, for this Mother's Day, I'd like to share my some of my most memorable Mom Quotes from over the years, plus a bonus quote from her mother, my grandmother. Enjoy, and I love you, Mom.
5. Sassy Mom
My mother majored in German and minored in French at UT Austin, though she claims to have forgotten all of it. She actually spent a summer living in Germany doing the 1960s version of study abroad, which turned out to be a month as a scullery maid (she is now an expert at peeling potatoes). After her job ended, she met up with her boyfriend, who was doing the same in a different German town, they bought a VW Beetle, and spent the rest of their time driving around Europe. Yeah I know - I told you she was cooler than me.
When I was younger, she taught me how to count to ten in German, and one time while driving I asked her if she remembered anything else. She responded with, "Denkst du daß, ich bin eine dingbat?" which translates to, "What do you think I am, a dingbat?" This remains the one (very useful) German phrase I know.
4. Punny Mom
My mom HATES puns. My father and I have subjected her to far too many over the years, and she tries to pretend they aren't happening, to no avail.
As a child, my long, thick hair and time spent outdoors meant I contracted lice a couple of times, periods when my mom come very close to murdering our entire family. Using the special shampoo on all of us, combing my thick hair with a tiny comb as I whined, washing everything I'd come in contact with, and of course, the idea that there were bugs living on her daughter's hair, was all a bit much for my mom. So imagine her delight when one time, she noticed my scratching my head and discovered I had lice - while we were on vacation.
So, we had to perform all of the above steps, but from some cabin in the woods where she was supposed to be relaxing. As we were packing up to leave, my mom turned to us and said, "Well, that was a louse-y vacation."
You'll never live that one down, Mom.
3. Wise Mom
When I was in college, I spent a good amount of time dating someone who wouldn't fully commit to me. After he graduated and went to medical school in another state, my parents were the opposite of pleased to find out that we still talked every day and I made plans to go visit him. On that first visit, he asked me, "Does it bother you that I don't love you?" which broke my naive little heart.
And of course, who do you call with a broken heart but your mom. I was telling her a seemingly insignificant marriage joke I had made to him that he had shot down, and my mom stopped me with the most poignant relationship advice that stays with me today (even if I am too hard-headed to take it sometimes): "Erin, you shouldn't be with someone like that. You should be with someone who jokes about marrying you."
2. Stupid Fights With Mom
My mom debated for a long time about whether or not to join Facebook. I was extremely against this idea, as I had all of my college drinking pictures online. When she finally pulled the trigger in 2009, the first thing she did was send me a message saying, "will not ask to be your friend!" So, I thought that was that, and continued living my life in Italy.
During our scheduled Sunday Skype calls, I could tell that my mom was pulling away and seemed upset with me, but I couldn't figure out why. Finally, my dad clued me in that while SHE would never ask to be my friend, she was upset that I had not asked HER to be my Facebook friend. I wish I could say the story ended there, but I was 24 and extremely stupid, because she HAD PROMISED. But finally, after a lot of untagging, we became friends. And now she hates Facebook and never uses it.
BONUS GRANDMOTHER STORY
My grandmother was the sweetest Southern lady you could ever imagine. The strongest language I ever heard her use was, "Durn!" which she would say as I mercilessly beat her at card games while flagrantly cheating (yes, I was an only child, why do you ask?). I stayed at her house every other weekend, and she'd spoil me with McDonald's, popsicles, chocolate chip cookies, and blueberry pancakes (and somehow I don't have diabetes).
One of her quirks was that she would always hum to herself, and when my mom asked her about the tune, she said, "Oh, I didn't realize I was humming at all!" This sent my mother into a quiet panic, as she thought my grandmother was coming down with early dementia.
When my grandmother was tucking me in during one of our sleepovers, I asked her what she hummed. "Oh, I just hum little tunes. You know, I'm aware that I'm humming - and I only do it to drive your mother crazy. Let's keep this our little secret."
1. Unconditional Love Mom
When I was very young and still trying to figure out right from wrong, I asked my mother what they would do if I committed a crime. "Well, honey, we'd be disappointed with you, but we'd still love you."
"But what if I killed someone? Would you still love me?"
"Of course we'd still love you. We'd find the best lawyer in the country."
Luckily, lawyers haven't been a major part of my life (yet), but it definitely taught me the extent of unconditional love. I'm so lucky to have that in my life.
Thank you, Mom.