27 Years, 27 Reasons Why I Love My Mother (Nancy)
I just turned 27 years old!
I want to be 16 again. That’s how I’m feeling.
I want to be breaking curfew, sneaking away from home. I want to be telling my mom I’m going to study down the street with the kid in the wheelchair when really I’m going to make-out with the Asian girl from honors Geometry who invited me over after I told her I was interested in her 3.14. I miss that. I miss those memories. It is sad getting old. I thought about all this as I turned 27, a couple weeks back.
I started thinking more and more about it, though; about everything I missed. After passing over the more decadent memories (learning to drink, unhooking a bra, breaking curfew, Asian math savant [above], etc.) I realized that in most my memories—certainly most of the good, meaningful ones—my mom was present. This is something I have often overlooked. Perhaps as I’m getting older, and slightlyyyyy more mature, I’m becoming aware of what matters to me. I’m becoming aware of what is really important: the people who love you unconditionally—mom.
I want to give thanks. I want to give thanks to my mom. Without her I would probably be in a dark place at this stage in my life (a strip club on a Monday haggling “dancers” with Ruby Tuesday gift cards and minimal change). I know that.
As long as I can remember I’ve overlooked all the things she has done for me, without fail. I selfishly focused on the superficial things. I don’t want to do that anymore. She means too much to me and she deserves much more.
So, in the spirit of this realization and 2017 as a new year, I’m going to list 27 things that I love about my mom and am thankful for. 27 things, because, I just turned 27 years of age, and she has been the most important person to me—excluding a few recent months when I had a sugar mamma—for all 27 of those years. Her birthday is also on the 27th of this month, so that brings things together nicely.
(Speaking to my mother now)
- Advice. We differ on a lot (everything). But I can always turn to you for advice or guidance. You work to educate me continuously. Five months ago, when I bought my first home, the nice female loan officer brought up PMI. I was confused as to why she was discussing PMS with me and divulging that type of personal information. You set me straight. Now I know about Personal Mortgage Insurance.
- Sacrifice. Everything you have done has been motivated by your desire to help your children. Kayce and I are beyond grateful; Kayce especially, as she was more of the problem child.
- Your appreciation for humor, and acceptance of mine, is something that means the world to me. I know you would have preferred a studious son who exhibited proper manners and basic decorum, but you let me be me.
- You are the most resilient person I know. I strive to carry on and persist in the face of adversity like you have. A 31 year old side-piece with minimal intelligence didn’t break you. You became stronger, and a better person. Hopefully she got hit by a bus.
- Your steadfast commitment to keeping me updated upon the marriages of people I grew up with and the babies they are now having is again, selfless. Family is the most important, and I am thankful you have taken it upon yourself to remind me that I am 27 and still single.
- Food. I love your cooking. Even when you got complacent, and thought you could get away with subpar product like oatmeal and toast, you would always rebound with something better the next day. I never had to tell you more than once. That’s special, and I’m thankful.
- You always encouraged me as a writer and a reader. When dad would call me “nerd”, or “book-queer”, you didn’t. You urged me to expand and improve my mind.
- I played every sport I could growing up. As I got older, into my early teen years, I travelled a lot. This ties back into sacrifice, but the miles you covered, bringing me to games and tournaments, is as expansive as it is selfless. You’re music was terrible (Il Divo/Rod Stewart), but your punctuality was noteworthy.
- You were a tactician and worthy adversary. I tested your nerve and psyche, a lot. For every time I tried to steal booze or dupe you into letting me stay out, you met me with fierce resistance and aggressive threats. I needed the challenge. It made me stronger.
- Time. I cannot remember a time when you did not have time for me. Aside from brief periods in the morning when you had breakfast and read the paper with our cat, Larry, you always had time for me.
- You gave me culture. Some of my fondest times with you, and still are, are the times when we watch(ed) classic films and musicals. When dad said I should be in the cage or chasing beef, you took me to an off-Broadway showing of “The Music Man”; which was lovely.
- Clothes. You bought me nice clothes and put attention into my physical appearance. By the third grade I knew the difference between pomade and moose. I looked good, and the girls of St. Vincent elementary all wanted my shit. That was because of you.
- Unconditional love. You’ve exhibited this my entire life. From the first set of china I broke as a child to the precious aged Scotch I stole to mix with Dr. Pepper junior year, you always showed me love.
- I remember an AAU (it means that I was good) basketball game I played in in the seventh grade. I had a truly horrible showing. I was upset and we lost. Right as the game ended, and I was sure everyone in the gym was solely fixated on my abysmal performance, you tripped and fell, violently descending from the top row of the wooden gym bleachers, all the way to the floor. Now, no one was thinking about my performance. All eyes and attention were on you. You did that, I know, so I didn’t lose confidence and would continue to work on my mid-range game and court vision. Selfless.
- Love for pets. At an early age, you showed Kayce and I how important it is to love and respect your pets. Larry often ate meals with us, sitting at the same table and eating the same food. He was an equal and respected member of our family. When he passed, you refused to change his litter box for half a year, as a tribute to his memory. I will love my pets the same way.
- Faith. Religion was always a constant in our lives growing up. You never forced our faith, but you always nurtured it. (No joke or whimsical remark here, content too serious.)
- Cinnabon. Cinnabon roles are my favorite treat, by a long shot. Every Christmas, as long as I can remember, you got them for me, even when they had to be ordered in advance. I remember on particular one Christmas dad ate half of my Cinnabon. I cried. A few months later you threw all his clothes on the front lawn. You did that because of the Cinnabon. You always had my back.
- You have kept everything that matters to me. Still, in boxes upstairs, you’ve kept and cherished all memories of meaning from years past. From baseball jerseys, to books, to unhealthy longings for me to get back with a certain ex-girlfriend, you keep them with sentiment.
- I will never have a greater foundation of support in my life than you. In rough times, there has never been an instance where I couldn’t fall back into your support.
- You have filed my taxes since 2013. Thank you.
- When you take a vacation, you always first think of ways in which you can share that time with me and Kayce. As young adults, time we can spend together is becoming more and more precious. I would like to go to the Harry Potter World in Orlando next.
- Even in times when you are completely against what I am doing or the direction I am going, you never fail to voice your confidence in me as a person. That means a lot, and it always propels me in my endeavors.
- When you tell me I am your favorite child and that you are most proud of me, over Kayce, that too motivates me.
- In my phone, under favorites, which the Samsung device apportions based on call activity, you are number one.
(It’s getting late and I didn’t want to sacrifice individual quality with each numbered note. I also committed pretty hard to the 27 theme. 25-27 are still genuine, though.)