Let Us Never Forget

Some things we just never forget because we learned them from Mom. “I’ll always be your mother,” she used to say and still does. Hearing this was at times the last thing I wanted to hear, but, now, remembering that she will always be my mom is priceless.

One sunny afternoon my brother and I found a bee's nest. Wearing only shorts, I swung a broom at the nest with all the strength and vigor my 10-year-old body could give, then turned and ran. Twenty stings later, I was crying as Mom tended to the hurt. Just having my arms around her made everything okay, and the stings didn’t hurt quite as much with her hugs and pats. “It’s all part of growing up,” she said. Since that day, I’ve been hurt more times than I can remember, and every time I think to myself, it’s all part of growing up.

I’ve done a lot of growing up since Mom first told me that. I’ve tasted failure and been in the canyons of life. I’ve been on the tops of the mountains of success. I’ve battled ghosts of the past, felt the chill of being alone and bushwhacked my way through the forests of time. And I’ve always wondered what Mom was thinking of me.

One snowy February night, I felt the cold of winter and a broken relationship. I called Mom, and just hearing her voice and feeling her hugs and pats over the phone made it hurt less. I remembered the bees and her saying, "It’s all part of growing up."

When I heard one of my roommates playing the viola, I remembered Mom holding me to my hours practicing violin and piano everyday of childhood. I realize now the valuable lessons in perseverance she taught me.

I always knew that Mom was waiting in my corner, ready to wipe the sweat off my face, soak the blood up with a sponge, and say the right things. Sitting in the band or singing in choir, I could always find Mom’s eyes of quiet admiration. I would stand my tallest and feel proud to be her son.

Since the day the bees stung me, I’ve thought a lot about Mom and what she’s thinking. I’ve hoped to live up to her expectations and make her proud, just like she was at my concerts. We disagree on a lot of things, but that’s okay.

I know that I’ll always learn from Mom and her experience. I know that she’ll always love me, no matter what. And I know she'll always care.

Through my struggles and my triumphs, Mom was always there. I’ve realized that we’re very much alike, yet we retain and respect our differences. We both have a passion for living, and I count myself a better man because of what she’s taught me.

Some things we just never forget—like bee nests are better left untouched, breaking up is hard to do, and when it hurts, it’s all part of growing up.

Thanks, Mom. Happy Mother’s Day.



May 01, 2006 / Perspective